For Publication Monday, February 14
THE WB'S HIGHLY RATED DRAMA WILL SURPASS "THE WALTONS" AND "LITTLE
HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE" AS THE LONGEST-RUNNING FAMILY DRAMA OF ALL TIME
The WB Network and Spelling Television's 7th Heaven has earned an
early 10th season pick-up, which will make it the longest-running
family drama in television history. The announcement was made jointly
today by David Janollari, President of Entertainment for The WB and
executive producer Aaron Spelling, who is also the Chairman and CEO of
Spelling Television, Inc.
The previous record for longest-running family drama was shared by 7th
Heaven, The Walton's and Little House on the Prairie, which each aired
for nine consecutive seasons.
"This is a great day for everyone involved with this historic series,
especially the loyal fans that have made this appointment television
on Monday nights for almost a decade," said Mr. Janollari. "The
longevity and consistent quality of 7TH HEAVEN is a testament to the
commitment to excellence of Aaron Spelling, Duke Vincent, series
creator Brenda Hampton and a fabulous ensemble cast led by Stephen
Collins. An entire generation of pre-teens and teens has grown up
watching this show with their parents and learned valuable life
lessons. Through the prism of a loving traditional family, the
storylines serve as a jumping off point for important family
discussions. The bottom line is, this is a series that makes you proud
to be a broadcaster."
"The WB's 10th year pick-up of 7TH HEAVEN has put me into 8th heaven!"
said Aaron Spelling. "But seriously, we're thrilled that this pick-up
will make 7TH HEAVEN the longest running family show in television
history. We can't thank the WB enough for its support!"
7th Heaven, which debuted on August 26, 1996, has been The WB's
most-watched series for seven consecutive seasons (since the 1998-99
broadcast season). The show garnered the network's largest audience
ever on February 8, 1999, when 12.5 million viewers tuned in to watch
the birth of the Camden twins. This season, 7th Heaven is again the
network's most-watched series in households and total viewers and is
also strong in young demographics, ranking second in 12-34 and teens
and first in 18-49 amongst all series on The WB.
7th heaven has been extremely successful in relating stories that are
affecting families today and opening up avenues for discussion. Some
of the series' compelling storylines have focused on religious
tolerance, gun control, the Holocaust, voting, drug use and teen
sexuality. The series has won numerous awards, including being named
best drama in the Teen Choice Awards three times, and being hailed as
"The Best Show You're Not Watching" at the inaugural TV Guide Awards.
"Every day, I'm stopped on the street or in the market by someone who
tells me how important 7TH HEAVEN is to their family – that the show
prompts tough, essential talk between kids and parents," said series
star Stephen Collins. "They also tell me we make them laugh and cry.
It's a gift to work on this show, and to know that we' ll break a
record or two is the icing on the cake. 7TH HEAVEN has never been
media-sexy. We don't win the big awards, and whoever is
flavor-of-the-month will always get more attention on the red carpet.
However, as Lou Gehrig once said, `Today I consider myself the
luckiest man on the face of the earth.'"
"I think everyone is overlooking the show's most noticeable
achievement – after nine seasons, Stephen Collins still has his hair,"
said series creator and executive producer Brenda Hampton. "At this
point in time, there is every indication that he will still have it
for the tenth season, so we're looking forward to another year of
success. He is our lucky charm."
7th Heaven stars Collins as Reverend Eric Camden, Catherine Hicks as
Annie Camden, Barry Watson as Matt Camden, David Gallagher as Simon
Camden, Beverley Mitchell as Lucy Kinkirk, Mackenzie Rosman as Ruthie
Camden, Nikolas and Lorenzo Brino as Sam and David Camden, George
Stults as Kevin Kinkirk and Tyler Hoechlin as Martin Brewer.
The series was created by Brenda Hampton ("Mad About You," "Blossom")
who also serves as executive producer, along with Aaron Spelling and
E. Duke Vincent. 7th Heaven is produced by Spelling Television, Inc.,
a Paramount/Viacom company.