When ABC’s Battle of the Network Stars premieres on Thursday, June 29th (9/8C) it will carry on in the same cheerily cheesy manner as the original series in the ’70s & ’80s – opening round competition finds Team Sitcoms vs. TV Kids (pictured), for example.
One hundred TV stars past and present will participate – names like: Joey Lawrence, Gabriel Carteris, Keegan Allen and Jack Osbourne.
The teams will be coached by former MMA champiopn Ronda Rousey and Super Bowl champion DeMarcus Ware – with ESPN’s Mike Greenberg and Joe Tessitore hosting, and Cassidy Hubbarth and Cari Champion reporting from the sidelines.
Acomplete list of competitors and their teams follows.
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MMA Champion Ronda Rousey and Super Bowl Champion DeMarcus Ware Are Permanent Coaches
In an ode to ABC’s “Wide World of Sports,” 100 TV stars from 14 different network and cable companies will take their athleticism to a new level as they compete – to feel “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat” – in the revival of “Battle of the Network Stars,” based on the ‘70s and ‘80s television pop-culture classic, premiering on THURSDAY, JUNE 29 (9:00-10:00 p.m. EDT) on ABC. The new ”Battle of the Network Stars” will be a nostalgic throwback to the original series, where TV celebrities blended athleticism with hilarious antics while featuring an array of fan favorites from numerous TV series like “Modern Family,” “Pretty Little Liars,” “Scandal,” “Melrose Place,” “Beverly Hills, 90210,” “The Goldbergs,” “How to Get Away with Murder,” “Buffy the Vampire Slayer,” “The Incredible Hulk,” “The West Wing,” “Dallas,” “CHiPs,” “Law & Order” and many more.
The original series from ABC Sports began in 1976 and continued for 13 years. The 10-episode summer event will pit teams of current and classic TV stars from multiple eras and different genres against one another in a variety of athletic games. Viewers can look forward to seeing a fresh take at some of the classic show’s sporting events like Tug of War, Archery, Kayak Relay, Obstacle Course and Dunk Tank – all from the site of the original series, the beautiful campus of Pepperdine University in Malibu, California.
For this new version, fielding of the teams will be based on the TV characters people love from over the years to the current day – cops vs. TV sitcoms, White House vs. lawyers, TV moms & dads vs. TV kids, etc. In this way, viewers will get to see everyone’s favorites from over the years, even if they spanned different networks at the time.
Here are the 20 teams (100 stars), blue and red, competing against each other in separate episodes with athletic contests of physical grace and stamina (* = returning to “Battle of the Network Stars”):
- TV Sitcoms (Bronson Pinchot, Tom Arnold, Dave Coulier, AJ Michalka, Tracey Gold)
TV Kids (Joey Lawrence, Corbin Bleu, Nolan Gould, *Lisa Whelchel, *Kim Fields)
- Primetime Soaps (Ian Ziering, Josh Henderson, Gabrielle Carteris, *Donna Mills, Mischa Barton)
ABC Stars (*Olivia d’Abo, *Shari Belafonte, Michael Fishman, Jason Hervey, Anson Williams)
- Variety (Joanna Krupa, Nick Lachey, Vanessa Lachey, Gilles Marini, Jack Osbourne)
TV Sex Symbols (Keegan Allen, Traci Bingham, Rosa Blasi, Brant Daugherty, Galen Gering)
- Cops (Erik Estrada, *Larry Wilcox, Kelly Hu, Jodi Lyn O’Keefe, *Lorenzo Lamas)
TV Sitcoms (*Todd Bridges, Leigh-Allyn Baker, Dave Foley, Willie Garson, Jenna von Oy)
- White House (Cornelius Smith Jr., Marlee Matlin, Joshua Malina, LaMonica Garrett, Mary McCormack)
Lawyers (Elisabeth Rohm, Corbin Bernsen, Matt McGorry, Romi Dias, Catherine Bell)
- TV Moms & Dads (Chad Lowe, *Greg Evigan, *Ted McGinley, Lesley Fera, Jackee Harry)
TV Kids (*Jimmie Walker, *Mackenzie Phillips, Jonathan Lipnicki, Krista Marie Yu, Jeremy Miller)
- Famous TV Families (Danny Bonaduce, Barry Williams, Beverley Mitchell, *Willie Aames, *Charlene Tilton)
Doctors (Thomas Calabro, Taye Diggs, Rachelle Lefevre, *Deidre Hall, Benjamin Hollingsworth)
- Troublemakers (Vivica A. Fox, Paul Johansson, John Barrowman, Julie Benz, Catherine Bach)
TV Lifeguards (David Chokachi, Brande Roderick, *Parker Stevenson, Nicole Eggert, Gena Lee Nolin)
- ABC Stars (*Ted Lange, Troy Gentile, *Jill Whelan, Denise Richards, Joely Fisher)
Variety (Lance Bass, Joey Fatone, Adrienne Houghton, Cameron Mathison, Kelly Osbourne)
- Cops (Marisol Nichols, Roma Maffia, *Adrian Zmed, Fred Dryer, Ryan Paevey)
Sci-Fi Fantasy (*Lou Ferrigno, Vinnie Jones, Charisma Carpenter, Kevin Sorbo, Jill Wagner)
The hosts for “Battle of the Network Stars” are Mike Greenberg (@Espngreeny) and Joe Tessitore (@Joe_Tess) of ESPN; Cassidy Hubbarth (@CassidyHubbarth) and Cari Champion (@CariChampion) of ESPN will be the sideline reporters; plus Super Bowl 50 winner DeMarcus Ware (@DeMarcusWare) and MMA fighter/Olympian Ronda Rousey (@RondaRousey) will be the team captains.
The episode airdates will be announced at a later time.
“Battle of the Network Stars” is produced by Glassman Media and IMG, who also owns the format. The executive producers are Andrew Glassman, Will Staeger, Michael Antinoro and Chris Carlson.
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