Wondering how Network Ten were going to program themselves out of the funk that has been 2011? Wonder no more!!!

Last night Network Ten interim CEO Lachlan Murdoch & Network programmer David Mott fronted a number of the media, advertisers & some network talent to launch their schedule (or “up fronts”) for the coming year, as well as reminding us of the “wonderful programming they had still to come in 2011”. Believe it or not.

The highlights were somewhat expected, confirmed rumours, and included some surprises: Ch10 will deliver a breakfast television program Breakfast, hosted by Dr Andrew Rochford; Young Talent Time will return, hosted by Rob “Millsy” Mills; 6:30 with George Negus and The Renovators will return; & revamped Biggest Loser will appear for singles only as a dating/weight-loss crossover.

Oh. My. God.

There’s some great ideas in the new programming and what look to be some decent purchases from the US. Let’s see if they can keep everything upright or what’ll fall off between now and next year.

From the press release:

Network Ten announces its strongest program line-up in recent years, with a big new entertainment format, an exciting slate of Australian drama, seven new international series and plans to strengthen its dominance in daytime. Network Ten chief programming officer, David Mott said: “2012 is shaping up as oneof our most entertaining years ever. We are firmly focused on dominating in 18-49.”

New to TEN in 2011, come two new US dramas:
TERRA NOVA – filmed in the rainforests of Queensland, Steven Spielberg’s ambitious family drama is an epic adventure that’s set to turn the sci-fi genre on its head.

HOMELAND – a gritty psychological drama starring Claire Danes and Mandy Patinkin. The series centres on the homecoming of a US Marine and the CIA agent who suspects him of plotting a terrorist attack on US soil.

BREAKFAST – TEN is shaking up early mornings with BREAKFAST. Featuring a comination of news and entertainment, BREAKFAST will be the perfect start to the day. Speaking at Wednesday night’s launch event, the first of BREAKFAST’s co-hosts Andrew Rochford said: “Breakfast radio has taught me a great deal about how people want to start their day. They want the facts, but they want them in a light and entertaining way.”

YOUNG TALENT TIME – the show that launched the careers of Dannii Minogue, Tina Arena and Debbie Byrne returns home to TEN. Hosted by Rob Mills and coproduced by the show’s original creator, Mr Johnny Young, YOUNG TALENT TIME 2012 will be a contemporary take on the original format – just right for the GLEE generation.

BIKIE WARS – BROTHERS IN ARMS – From Screentime, the makers of Underbelly, and based on the best-selling book by Sandra Harvey, new series BIKIE WARS – BROTHERS IN ARMS is a compelling story of the Comancheros and the Bandidos – and their murderous showdown at Milperra.

UNDERGROUND – THE JULIAN ASSANGE STORY – set in Melbourne in the 1990s, this real-life drama follows the activities of an underground hacker movement as they crack the codes to the CIA’s computer systems. It’s the true story of an 18-year-old
Julian Assange.

PUBERTY BLUES – the TV adaption of Kathy Lette and Gabrielle Carey’s groundbreaking coming-of-age story, this series is a rites of passage tale about two teenage girls. It’s a frank and fearless look at teens in the 1970s.

REEF DOCTORS – Lisa McCune joins TEN as co-producer and star of a fast-paced action-adventure series called REEF DOCTORS. Due to start production later this year, the series will be filmed in and around the stunning Great Barrier Reef and the Daintree Rainforest of Northern Queensland.

THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW – in 2012, TEN is giving viewers a whole new reason to stay in on Saturday nights with the show that’s a must for A-list celebrities. THE GRAHAM NORTON SHOW is one of the funniest programs on British television – it’s fast, it’s fun and it’s wickedly cheeky.

TEN’s long running partnerships with Twentieth Century Fox and CBS will continue to deliver in 2012 with:
NEW GIRL – a witty new half-hour comedy starring Zooey Deschanel as an adorable 20-something trying to get over a bad break-up. Endearing? Totally. Hilarious? Absolutely! Awkward? You betcha!

THE FINDER – from the creator of Bones, comes a new one-hour spin-off procedural, starring Geoff Stults as the man who can find anything and anyone.

THE 2-2– a fast-paced series produced by Academy Award winner, Robert De Niro and featuring an ensemble cast that includes Leelee Sobieski, THE 2-2 revolves around six rookie cops learning to balance their personal lives with the demands of the job.

THE GIFTED MAN – New from CBS, THE GIFTED MAN stars Patrick Wilson as an ultra competitive surgeon whose life is changed when his ex-wife dies.

HOW TO BE A GENTLEMAN – inspired by the book of the same name, this is a comedy about unlikely friendships. Starring Reece Darby (Flight of the Conchords) and Kevin Dillon (Entourage), HOW TO BE A GENTLEMAN adds another comedy to TEN’s line-up.

In addition to the all new YOUNG TALENT TIME, all TEN’s marquee franchises are set to return in 2012. Get ready for some romance with THE BIGGEST LOSER – SINGLES. Settle in for another delicious season of MASTERCHEF AUSTRALIA. And then get ready for a
whole new RENOVATORS experience. Speaking about the return of THE RENOVATORS, Mr Mott said: “So far the format has underperformed. But, it’s a brand we believe in so we are working directly with Shine to renovate THE RENOVATORS for 2011 and beyond.”

Also back for another year, hit US comedy MODERN FAMILY, and returning for season three, the little music show that could, GLEE. Fans can look forward to the next installment of MERLIN. There’s also more of the LAW & ORDER franchise, another
season of THE GOOD WIFE, and plenty more NCIS and NCIS: LOS ANGELES. TEN’s line-up of returning US hits is underpinned by a raft of locally produced light entertainment formats including more BONDI RESCUE and another season of BONDI VET.

In daytime, there will be more hilarity with the girls from THE CIRCLE, as well as all your favourite day-time hits. George and the 6.30 team will be back in 2012 followed by another ripper year of Dave Hughes, Charlie Pickering and Carrie Bickmore as they bring you their take on the stories of the day in THE 7PM PROJECT. Also returning in 2012, fans of the Proudman family can look forward to the next installment of OFFSPRING.

ONE IN 2012
With ONE now firmly established as a premium entertainment channel for 25-54s, with a distinct appeal for men, 2012 will be another big year for the channel. Leading the charge is the next season of US drama SONS OF ANARCHY and more of the British travel series AN IDIOT ABROAD… THE BUCKET LIST. Also making ONE the destination for entertainment is PRISON BREAK, and every episodes of the show that changed it all – 24.

All this mixed with groundbreaking adventure series, COPS, TWISTER SISTERS and FEAR FACTOR and you have a compelling line-up for adrenaline junkies. And don’t forget all the action of the MOTOGP and every round of the FORMULA ONE live and exclusive to ONE.

The star performer of Australia’s digital multi-channels this year, ELEVEN has cemented its place as the cheeky and irreverent destination for the youth market. In 2012, ELEVEN will again be the home to US series WILFRED, the Australian dog
done good, supernatural drama BEING HUMAN and US talent competition THE GLEE PROJECT. There’ll be more NEIGHBOURS, THE SIMPSONS, FUTURAMA, DEXTER and SUPERNATURAL as well as plenty more from the CBS library with EVERYBODY LOVES RAYMOND, FRASIER, HAPPY DAYS and SEX AND THE CITY.

Still to come in 2011, JUNIOR MASTERCHEF is back for a second season, showcasing the talents of Australia’s best young amateur cooks. Guided by Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris, Matt Moran and Anna Gare, these tiny cooks face mighty challenges with youthful enthusiasm, bringing the joy back to cooking.

The biggest sports showdown of the year, the AFL GRAND FINAL will air on TEN on October 1. And from the makers of GOOD NEWS WEEK, there’s the all-new GOOD NEWS WORLD, as well as more CAN OF WORMS, new TALKIN’ ‘BOUT YOUR GENERATION, the series

Rounding out the year, is a bold and powerful new series, CLASS OF 2011. It follows a group of students as they attempt to get their academic careers back on track. It’s not about a quick fix, nor is it about improving exam results. It’s about changing
lives and setting kids on the right course for life. Uplifting, touching and optimistic, CLASS OF 2011 will leave you energised about what’s possible when the education system gets it right.

In 2012, Network Ten will continue to expand its suite of digital media assets, ensuring audiences can watch all our shows, any time, and place with a range of devices.

With dedicated websites, catch-up TV, as well as iPhone and iPad sites across each of our channels, TEN will launch Android, internet-connected TV and gaming platform services over the next twelve months, giving Network Ten the deepest
connectivity of any commercial network. And with 3 million unique visitors to our sites each month, more than 60 million video
views so far this year and dwell times in excess of 20 minutes, Network Ten also boasts some of the highest online engagement levels of any commercial network.

Network Ten is among the leading networks for catch-up TV, with the rights to stream over 60 programs. In 2012 we will continue to expand our catch-up TV service, watchtv, giving fans even more opportunity to watch episodes they’ve
missed or re-watch their favourite TV moments. And just as we did this year for the MotoGP and Formula One, in 2012, BREAKFAST and YOUNG TALENT TIME will be streamed live online and via smart phone applications.