While everyone else races to create infinite scripted programming, A&E set themselves free last year by choosing instead to focus only on nonfiction.
“There’s enough fiction and drama in the world,” said Elaine Frontain Bryant, EVP and head of programming, A&E Networks. “What our audiences are looking for, is the quest for the truth and at A&E, we’re always in search for the truth.”
While they’re “not the easiest stories to tell,” Emmys under the network’s belt for Leah Remini: Scientology and the Aftermath and Born This Way, prove that the “truth doesn’t always hurt,” Bryant said.
Since the change, the network has enjoyed nine consecutive months of growth. According to Bryant, based on impressions A&E is the fastest-growing cable network. Indeed, Bryant said the network was one of just four entertainment networks to grow last year.
A&E hopes its new iteration of The First 48 will continue that growth when it premieres March 29 at 8 p.m. This year, they’re bringing Marcia Clark into the fold with Marcia Clark Investigates The First 48, where the high-profile attorney will reinvestigate infamous unresolved murder cases such as Casey Anthony and Stacy Peterson.
“This is a show with a focused mission on looking at what the truth is, shining a light on the truth and hoping to bring justice and uncover knowledge as to what really happened,” said host and executive producer Marcia Clark.
“It’s not about rehashing, but a legitimate attempt to advance cases,” she said. “We’re getting at something new.”
Clark and company prove that by unearthing game-changing evidence about the first 48 hours in Casey Anthony’s case.
Other premiere dates include Grace vs. Abrams on March 29 at 10 p.m.