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Lifetime picks up 'America's Most Wanted'

Here's a bit of news no one -- with the exception of the principals -- expected on this rainy Tuesday: "America's Most Wanted" is going to Lifetime! 

  (I add the "!" because this really is a big surprise.)

 "America's Most Wanted" is one of the rarest shows on the entire spectrum of American television - it helped launch the Fox Network many many years ago, and became a bona fide law enforcement tool in the process, helping to catch probably hundreds of crooks, etc., over its long run. Lance Heflin, its longtime producer, was a CBS News producer of some reknown before John Walsh brought him aboard to run a series that was literally wrought of his own personal tragedy -- the kidnapping and murder of his son. (Lance has since left.) While the show held its spot on Saturday for decades, clearly Fox wanted/needed the time for other business, and "AMW" just wasn't bringing in the numbers anymore, so it was cut back to an occassional special this season. 

   In any event, I've forgotten to give you all the other relevant news, and here it it straight from the press release: 

   "Hosted and executive produced by Walsh, America’s Most Wanted has become one of the most important programs on television, having played a major role in the capture of more than 1,100 fugitives in the U.S. and 30 countries, including 17 on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted List, and rescue of 61 children and missing persons since its launch in 1988.

Aside from its landmark status in the annals of television as a leader in using the medium to apprehend the world’s most dangerous criminals, the series also has shaped legislation and the national dialogue on crime fighting, and received numerous honors for its work.

This month at the Creative Arts Emmy® Awards, the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences will present Walsh with the prestigious Governors Award, which “salutes an individual, company or organization that has made a substantial impact and demonstrated the extraordinary use of television.”

"'America's Most Wanted' is a seminal program that provides a very valuable service to both viewers and law enforcement agencies," said Lifetime president Nancy Dubuc. "For more than two decades John Walsh has been leading the fight against crime and it's an honor to partner with him on bringing back this important show."

“I’ve always believed there was something very special about America’s Most Wanted and that there should be a home for it on television, and I couldn’t be happier to now be able bring it back on Lifetime,” said Walsh. “We’ve often been called the court of last resort…now we are back in the game and ready to saddle up for another season to get justice for victims and put dangerous criminals behind bars.”

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