The new TNT original series Memphis Beat debuted Tuesday night with a strong 4.3 million viewers. Memphis Beat built on the lead-in provided by the second-season premiere of HawthoRNe, which outperformed its first-season average with 3.4 million viewers. The solid results for Memphis Beat and HawthoRNe continue TNT’s success in originals, which was kicked off Sunday with third season premiere of the hit series Leverage.
Memphis Beat, starring Jason Lee and Alfre Woodard, delivered 4,334,000 viewers; 3,154,000 households; 1,412,000 adults 18-49 and 1,754,000 adults 25-54. HawthoRNe, starring and executive-produced by Jada Pinkett Smith, hit the ground running for its second season with 3,419,000 viewers, outdelivering its first-season average of 3,393,000 viewers. Tuesday’s episode also delivered 2,557,000 households; 1,409,000 adults 18-49; and 1,525,000 adults 25-54.
“Tuesday looks to be a strong night for TNT, anchored by two exceptional, engaging, character-driven dramas,” said Michael Wright, executive vice president and head of programming for TNT, TBS and Turner Classic Movies (TCM). “The success of Sunday’s Leverage and Tuesday’s HawthoRNe and Memphis Beat have set the stage for another outstanding summer on TNT.”
HawthoRNe stars Pinkett Smith as Christina Hawthorne, an impassioned Chief Nursing Officer struggling to whip a failing hospital – and her personal life – into shape. The series co-stars Michael Vartan, Suleka Mathew, David Julian Hirsh, Christina Moore and Hannah Hodson. Created by Emmy® winner John Masius, HawthoRNe comes to TNT from Sony Pictures Television in association with Pinkett Smith’s 100% Womon Productions, John Masius Productions and Jamie Tarses’ FanFare Productions.
In Memphis Beat, Lee plays Dwight Hendricks, a quirky Memphis police detective with an intimate connection to the city, a passion for blues music and a close relationship with his mother. Woodard plays Lt. Tanya Rice, a demanding boss determined to keep Dwight on a short leash. The series co-stars DJ Qualls, Celia Weston, Sam Hennings, Leonard Earl Howze and Abraham Benrubi. Created by actor Joshua Harto and Liz W. Garcia, Memphis Beat comes to TNT from George Clooney and Grant Heslov’s Smokehouse Pictures and Warner Horizon Television.
TNT’s summer originals line-up will expand July 12 with the sixth-season premiere of ad-supported cable’s #1 series of all time, The Closer, starring Kyra Sedgwick. It will be joined by the eagerly anticipated new crime drama Rizzoli & Isles, starring Angie Harmon and Sasha Alexander and based characters created by crime novelist Tess Gerritsen. In August, Jerry Bruckheimer’s high-octane cop drama Dark Blue, starring Dylan McDermott, returns for its second season, with Battlestar Galactica’s Tricia Helfer joining the cast.