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'Grease,' 'Titanic' in the Lineup

WEEKEND TV

April 10, 1997|SUSAN KING | TIMES STAFF WRITER

The networks unveiled more than 10 new series last month. Three more series get a spring tryout this weekend.

First up to bat is NBC's sitcom "Fired Up," premiering tonight in the prime 9:30 slot after "Seinfeld." Sharon Lawrence of ABC's "NYPD Blue" stars as a snobby marketing executive forced to run a business with her former assistant (Leah Remini) out of a SoHo loft after the two are fired from an elite firm. (See review on Page 46.)

ABC is juggling its entire Saturday evening lineup. The struggling "Lois & Clark: The New Adventures of Superman" now anchors the low-rated evening, airing at 8 on Channel 7. Following at 9 is the quirky new comedy-drama "Leaving L.A.," set in the L.A. county coroner's office. Ron Rifkin, Christopher Meloni and Melina Kanakaredes star. The dramatic anthology "Gun" premieres at 10 p.m. Robert Altman is an executive producer of the series, a chain of stories about the various owners of a single pearl-handled pistol. Daniel Stern stars in the premiere episode.

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Elsewhere this weekend:

Today

It's time to get in the swing with the "Masters Golf Tournament" from the Augusta National in Georgia. USA presents first-round coverage at 1 p.m. and continues at the same time Friday. CBS takes over the coverage Saturday at 12:30 p.m. and Sunday at 1 p.m. on Channel 2.

Friday

Tawny Little and Alex Trebek host "Grease!: A Rock 'n' Roll Reunion," at 7 p.m. on KCOP-TV Channel 13. The one-hour special covers the opening of the popular '50s musical at the Wilshire Theater. The program also takes a behind-the-scenes look at the current touring company and recalls the former stars of the Broadway editions, including Patrick Swayze, Barry Bostwick and Brooke Shields.

Following at 8 p.m., KCOP will air the blockbuster 1978 film version of "Grease," starring John Travolta and Olivia Newton-John.

USA's "It Just Takes One," airing at 7 p.m., examines the subjects of tolerance and understanding through dance, poetry and song. Malik Yoba, Edward James Olmos and the cast of "Bring in 'Da Noise, Bring in 'Da Funk" guest.

Sheryl Crow, Celine Dion, James Taylor, Steve Winwood, Stevie Wonder and the Wallflowers are among the performers on "The VH1 Honors," the channel's fourth annual concert, airing at 9 p.m. Proceeds from the event, taped at the Universal Amphitheatre, benefit public schools.

Tim Russert hosts PBS' "Liberty and Limits: The Federalist Idea 200 Years Later," airing at 9 p.m. on Channel 28. The four-part series focuses on social and political issues that the framers of the Constitution never considered. The first installment looks at the balance of power between the president and Congress.

KCET's "Here and There," airing at 10:30 p.m. on Channel 28, takes viewers on a musical tour of Rio de Janeiro during Mardi Gras.

Saturday

Bravo presents "A Baroque Odyssey," airing at 4 p.m., a documentary celebrating 10 years of the famed Cirque du Soleil. Following at 5 p.m. is the Cirque du Soleil show "Saltimbanco."

In honor of its 25th anniversary, Showtime is airing the Oscar-winning classic "The Godfather" at 8 p.m. The 1974 Oscar-winning sequel, "The Godfather Part II," airs Sunday at 8 p.m.

Sunday

ABC presents "The Brit Awards '97," airing at 12:35 a.m. on Channel 7. England's version of the Grammy Awards features performances from Spice Girls, Diana Ross with Jamiroquai, the Fugees, Sheryl Crow and the Bee Gees.

HBO's animated series "Happily Ever After: Fairy Tales for Every Child" returns at 7:30 p.m. with a new season of 13 episodes. The series kicks off with "Pinocchio," featuring the voices of Will Smith, Chris Rock, Charles S. Dutton, Della Reese and Garrett Morris.

Roma Downey is the host of CBS' "A Night of Hope," the network's first all-series Sunday evening since 1987. The lineup features "60 Minutes" at 7 p.m., "Touched by an Angel" at 8 p.m., and special installments of "Early Edition" at 9 p.m. and "Chicago Hope" at 10 p.m.

Linda Ellerbee and Microsoft founder Bill Gates answer questions about computers on "Nick News Special Edition: Online and Off the Wall," airing at 8:30 p.m. on Nickelodeon.

PBS' "Masterpiece Theatre" presents a new two-part adaptation of Daphne du Maurier's classic romantic mystery "Rebecca," airing at 9 p.m. on Channel 28. Charles Dance ("The Jewel in the Crown") plays the handsome, wealthy widower Maxim de Winter, who brings his shy young bride (Emilia Fox) home to his Cornwall mansion. The conclusion airs next Sunday.

The Discovery Channel premieres "Titantic: Anatomy of a Disaster," on the eve of the 85th anniversary of the sinking. This two-hour special, airing at 9 p.m., examines the findings of a monthlong international expedition that uncovered new facts on the actual damage to the wreck and the sequence of events after the ship's impact with the iceberg.

"In the Life," the national gay and lesbian newsmagazine airing at midnight on Channel 28, looks at the participation and experience of gay men and women in a patchwork of American workplaces--Midwestern farms, the circus, Disney's back lot and an automotive assembly line.

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