CBS adds Robin Williams to veteran hits in fall TV lineup

Wed May 15, 2013 12:10pm EDT
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By Liana B. Baker

(Reuters) - Top-rated U.S. broadcast network CBS will bring comedian Robin Williams back to television next season to plug one of the few holes in its primetime schedule.

CBS Corp unveiled eight new series on Wednesday ahead of its upfront presentation in New York, an annual rite when broadcasters try to persuade advertisers to spend billions of dollars in commercials for their new shows.

CBS is riding a stable of megahits, including crime drama "NCIS" and comedies "The Big Bang Theory" and "Two and a Half Men." Last week, the network had five of the six highest-rated programs on broadcast primetime TV, according to Nielsen ratings.

As such, the network is bringing back 20 shows, more than any of its competitors. Chief Executive Les Moonves said CBS has never been so profitable, which helped drive the stock to an all time high on Tuesday.

"The key is getting hits on this network," Moonves told reporters. "Our schedule going into next year is going to be even stronger than it's ever been before."

The Williams vehicle "The Crazy Ones" also stars Sarah Michelle Gellar of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" fame and is produced by David E. Kelly, best known for shows like "Ally McBeal."

Williams plays an eccentric advertising executive who works alongside his daughter, played by Gellar. The show will air Thursdays at 9 p.m. ET.

Williams rose to fame in the 1970s playing the wildly comic space alien Mork in the hit television show "Mork and Mindy." He later built a successful career in movies performing in comedies, dramas, big Hollywood flicks and low-budget art house films. He won an Oscar in 1998 for his role in "Good Will Hunting" and has been nominated three other times.   Continued...

Comedian Robin Williams reacts after receiving the Stand Up Icon Award during the second annual 2012 Comedy Awards in New York April 28, 2012. REUTERS/Stephen Chernin