Stuart Levine of Variety reports that with one of the main characters pregnant and the showrunner asking to leave the show, that romantic comedy Love Bites, originally scheduled for 10pm Thursdays on NBC, has been replaced by 13 weeks of "original" The Apprentice. It seems now that Love Bites will follow The Apprentice.
We knew that both "original" and "celebrity" Apprentice would be back next season, but they didn't until today have any announced schedule. No word yet from the Donald on his always ready ability to step into the breach.
Update: And moments after I posted this, NBC was out with the press release:
NBC UNVEILS NEW EDITION OF ‘THE APPRENTICE’ ON THURSDAYS (10-11 P.M. ET) AS DONALD TRUMP RETURNS TO PUT AMERICA BACK TO WORK
New Version Will Offer the Opportunity of a Lifetime to 16 Candidates Who Have Been Hit Hard by Economy
UNIVERSAL CITY, Calif. – July 1, 2010 – NBC will debut the newly revised edition of its previously announced “The Apprentice” series on Thursdays (10-11 p.m. ET) beginning this Fall.
NBC and Donald Trump want to put America back to work -- and after a long wait, the boardroom will be open again for candidates who have lost their jobs as the network showcases an updated version of the popular original alternative series “The Apprentice,” with Trump returning to preside.
“Love Bites,” the hour-long romantic comedy anthology series that was previously scheduled for Thursdays (10-11 p.m. ET) beginning this Fall, will premiere later during the 2010-11 season.
"Everyone at the network loves 'Love Bites,' but for a number of reasons, it now makes sense to showcase the comedic anthology series a little later in the new season," said Mitch Metcalf, Executive Vice President, Program Planning & Scheduling, NBC Entertainment. "We're extremely fortunate to have a potent show such as the new and contemporary version of Donald Trump's 'The Apprentice' ready to step into the slot and keep our Thursday lineup moving forward from a position of strength."
Trump will give the opportunity of a lifetime to 16 new candidates ranging in age -- all of whom have been hit hard by the current economic downturn. These will include talented and bright prospects who have lost their jobs with no hope in sight as well as recent college graduates who currently have few if any prospects. Joining Trump will be boardroom advisers Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka Trump and George Ross. Also included among the advisers will be a more focused group of business guest executives in the revolving chair -- both relevant to the tasks at hand and to the corporate employment environment.
The new season of “The Apprentice” -- which just finished shooting this week in New York City -- promises to be an engaging and fresh look at the changing face of corporate America. It will showcase what has turned out to be an incredible cast of candidates, all vying to become “The Apprentice” and all deserving of a fresh start to their careers.
Times have changed since “The Apprentice” first premiered in 2004. Instead of the high-flying rewards enjoyed by winning teams in previous seasons, Trump has re-directed the focus to more meaningful rewards aimed at improving the lives of the candidates. As a result, winning Project Managers will be rewarded with one-on-one meetings with some of America's best-known business leaders and CEOs.
The winner will land a job within The Trump Organization with a six-figure salary.