News Briefs: The River Gets Off to a Mediocre Start

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RATINGS REPORT

... ABC's The River debuted last night and it did... okay. The found-footage drama about an expedition in the Amazon averaged 7.5 million viewers and a 2.4 rating during its two-hour debut. That's incredibly average, which is sad because TV needs more shows about boats equipped with 3,000 cameras. [EW]

... NCIS aired its 200th episode last night, and it drew a whopping 20.8 million viewers! Which really isn't that exciting considering the January 10 episode drew 20.93 million viewers. Way to exaggerate, New York Times! Here's an interesting stat, though: Of the 20.8 million viewers, 5.3 million of them were between the ages of 18 and 49 and 14.8 million of them were between the ages of 50 and dead. [NYT]


DEVELOPMENT DEALS

... ABC wants moore Mandy! The network has picked up a single-camera comedy pilot starring Mandy Moore as half of a newlywed couple that opens a hip, new restaurant. Well boy oh boy that sounds like something I probably won't watch. [Deadline Hollywood]

... ABC continued its streak of ordering pilots I won't watch with a remake of the U.K. series Mistresses. The estrogen-powered drama revolves around four women and their romantic endeavors. [Deadline Hollywood]


SCHEDULING NEWS

... HBO's The Newsroom, Aaron Sorkin's anticipated drama about a 24-hour cable news channel, might have a premiere date. Word is, HBO is looking at a June 24 debut so that The Newsroom can follow the start of the new season of True Blood. Who doesn't want to go from sexy vampires and studly werewolves to a man sitting behind a desk telling you about regime change in Syria? [Media Bistro]

... Speaking of vampires, Pauly D of Jersey Shore has a new show coming out called The Pauly D Project. And it's debuting March 29 and will be paired with the revival of Punk'd. Nothing in this blurb makes me happy. [EW]


CASTING ROUNDUP

... Alfred Molina ("Throw me the idol, I throw you the whip!") will star in the new TNT series Chelsea General. The medical drama, from David E. Kelley, is about what every medical drama is about: doctors who try to save lives and get laid. If it ain't broke, don't fix it. But can we get a second opinion? Because I really think it's broken. [Deadline Hollywood]

... ABC's pilot Last Resort—you know, that one about an independent nation formed by a rogue crew of a nuclear submarines!—has added Daisy Betts (Harry's Law) to its cast. She'll play the young female officer who probably has to overcome sexism but ultimately proves she's worthy with a gutsy decision or arm-wrestling match. Also, The CW's Cult, about a TV show that spawns copycat murders, has cast Alona Tal. Tal, who played Jo on Supernatural, will play an actress on the fake show. [Deadline Hollywood]

... Maya Rudolph is going to be Up All Night on February 18, when she returns to Saturday Night Live as host. The musical guest will be Sleigh Bells, who I've never heard of because I'm a weird combination of really old and really cool. [NBC]


Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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