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Latest News

Facts coming to Ohio! (9/4/06)

The Facts of Life is coming to WSFJ/WCPX in Columbus, OH starting Monday, September 11 at 5:30 p.m. It will air weekdays. Go to http://www.gtn51.com for more information.

Special thanks to Pavanbadal for providing this news.

Sony OFFICIALLY announces Season 3 DVD! (8/14/06)

For cover art click here.

Special thanks to Pavanbadal for providing the press release:

You Take the Good, You Take the Bad,

You Take Them Both and There You Have THE FACTS OF LIFE: THE COMPLETE THIRD SEASON Emmy® Nominee Charlotte Rae, with Nancy McKeon, Lisa Whelchel, Kim Fields, and Mindy Cohn Return to DVD October 24

CULVER CITY, CALIF. (August 14, 2006) Blair, Jo, Tootie, Natalie and Mrs. Garrett return to DVD on October 24 when Sony Pictures Home Entertainment debuts The Facts of Life: The Complete Third Season. The three-disc set of 24 episodes from the popular, long-running series tackles issues that still face teenagers today: alcohol, romance, competition, and breaking the rules. As Mrs. Garrett, the ultimate den mother, Charlotte Rae was nominated for an Emmy® for her work in this season. The set will be priced at $29.95 SRP.

The Facts of Life also stars Lisa Whelchel (Where the Red Fern Grows) as Blair, the snooty rich girl who ultimately demonstrates that shes not as perfect as she appears; Nancy McKeon (TVs The Division) as Jo, the rebellious girl from the wrong side of the tracks who frequently shows a softer side beneath her hard shell; Mindy Cohn (TVs The Help) as Natalie, the perky comedienne in the group who always has a funny line in any situation; and Kim Fields (TVs Living Single) as Tootie, the youngest member of the group who often gets herself into trouble over her love of spreading gossip.

The Facts of Life first aired on NBC August 24, 1979, as a spin-off from the networks culturally popular sitcom Diff'rent Strokes, lasting 9 seasons and 209 episodes. After its somewhat slow start, The Facts of Life found its niche and became a success, ultimately becoming one of the longest-running sitcoms on television, despite numerous timeslot changes over the course of its run.

The third season finds the characters in myriad dilemmas: Tootie (Fields) gets drunk for the first time, as well as developing a crush on her favorite singer (Jermaine Jackson of The Jackson 5); Natalie (Cohn) gets mugged after coming home from a party and develops a fear of going outside; Jo (McKeon) falls out of love with her fiancée (played by 80s heartthrob Clark Brandon) and in love with the man whos playing her husband in a simulated marriage project for a class; Blair (Whelchel) learns her grandfather is a member of a Ku Klux Klan; and Mrs. Garrett has her hands full when she rekindles an old romantic fling.

DVD Special Features Include:

* Digitally Mastered Audio and Video * Full Screen Presentations * Audio: English (stereo) * Bonus Previews * Closed Captioned

The Facts of Life: The Complete Third Season episodes include:

Growing Pains
Fear Strikes Back
Baby in the House
A Friend in Deed
Front Page
Give and Take
Sweet Sorrow
From Russia with Love
Dear Me
Cousin Geri Returns
Green-Eyed Monster
The Americanization of Miko
Marriage Brokers
Four Musketeers
The Affair
The Runaway
New York, New York
Kids Can Be Cruel
Mind Your Own Business
The Academy
Read No evil
Jos Cousin
Read No Evil
Broadcast Year: 1981 1982

The Facts of Life: The Complete Third has a run time of approximately 602 minutes and is not rated.

Season 3 of Facts of Life arrives this Fall! (7/28/06)

Read the full story here.

Amazon.com has announced that the official release date for Season 3 to come on October 24th. Its retail price is $29.95 for 602 minutes. Also, it is expected that it will be a 3 disc set.

Facts of Life comes to Canada, eh? (7/28/06)

Facts of Life is making it's way back to Canada after 12 years (formally on CBC) to the Crossword Television System (CTS), a christian-based cable network in Canada this Fall. According to the official Fall 2006 schedule (at http://www.ctstv.com/pdf/FALL2006.pdf) Facts of Life will be airing on 7:30pm (Eastern time). Before two other shows: Step By Step and The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air, which also make their debut on CTS' line-up this Fall. Make sure to check your local listings for details!

Want to own a piece of FOL history? (7/20/06)

Molly Ringwald jersey and Julie Piekarski's warm-up jacket is up for sale on Ebay. The item is a blue and yellow bunting jacket with Eastman school insignia, handwritten "Sue Ellen" (Julie Piekarski's character) in the collar; accompanied with a matching cotton jersey with Eastman insignia patch over the left breast, handwritten "Molly" in the collar, worn by Molly Ringwald in the first-season episode "Running". The item runs from $300-$500. The auction ends on Ebay on July 28th.

Click here to go to the Ebay auction for this item.

Sony Preps for Season 3 Release (7/04/06)

It's no suprise that season 1 & 2 sold well for Sony, it is expected that the set sold in sales numbers comparible to to Bewitched and I Dream of Jeannie. Because Sony was so pleased with the sales of seasons 1 & 2; season 3 is in the works. According to a person in connection with Sony (no, not pavanbadal of Sitcoms Online) has said; "expect it either in time for Christmas or really early in 2007, but I'd say November/December because season 1&2 sold very well and they'd want to cash in on the holiday season". We're not exactly sure how much of that is true, but if we haven't heard anything from Sony in February, we may have faith in her. So, it looks like season 3 will be out by years end, season 4 next spring or summer, and maybe season 5 in late 2007/early 2008? We hope so.

For all of you wondering why won't season 4 be packaged with season 3 like the seasons 1 & 2 release; it's because season 1 was shorter and Sony didn't want to risk sales with season 1 alone. Thus, as we know they released the two togethers. Besides, if season 3 & 4 were released together [including the Paris movie, which we hope is included] it would be over 50 half-hours and that seems a lot for one set.

Facts of Life Leaves on Comcast on Demand (6/19/06)

FOL will disappear from Comcast On Demand after July 31. The last few season 3 episodes will be gone on June 30 and the last set of episodes from season 4 will be gone after July 31, ending FOL's run on Comcast. But don't worry, we believe that this a sign from Sony telling us that they are serious about continuing to release the show on DVD as opposed to testing the waters on it with on demand audiences. Charlie's Angels will be replacing it

BREAKING NEWS: "The Today Show" reunites 3 of the 4 girls (5/08/06)

According to Lisa Whelchel's journal entry:

...I'm flying to New York today to meet up with "Jo" and "Natalie." Okay, I mean, Nancy McKeon and Mindy Cohn. I am SOOOOO excited. I miss them very much. I'm so bummed that Kim Fields won't be joining us. She must be in a play or something because she is usually cool about all the oldie-goldie stuff. I'll find out the scoop and write about it in next week's journal entry.

DVD Appearence Schedule (5/08/06)

Tuesday, May 9:
The Today Show Live 9:15 am NBC
Entertainment Tonight (Taped) to air 7:00 pm in most markets, check listings
Frank DeCaro Show Sirius Satellite Radio Live 1:30 pm Eastern: http://www.sirius.com/OutQ
CNN Showbiz Tonight Live 5:30 - 6:30 pm Eastern taped, airs 11pm on Headline News

Wednesday, May 10:
Fox & Friends Live 7:45 AM Eastern on Fox News Channel
CNN American Morning Live 9:40 AM Eastern, on CNN
ABC Radio Network Tape to feed to 3,600 Stations on May 10th http://abcradio.go.com/

Monday, May 22:
Access Hollywood Tape to air 7:30 pm in most markets, check listings

Cast on "The Today Show" Update (5/07/06)

For those of you that will be watching out for The Facts of Life reunion on "The Today Show", they will be appearing it the later part of the show. The show goes as follows:

Tuesday, May 9 (7-9 a.m.): Joel Osteen of "Joel Osteen Ministries." Douglas Brinkley talks about his book "The Great Deluge: Hurricane Katrina, New Orleans, and the Mississippi Gulf Coast." Guida De Laurentiis presents "Cooking with Guida."

(9-10 a.m.): "The Facts of Life" cast members Nancy McKeon, Lisa Whelchel, Kim Fields, and Mindy Cohn reunite. Clare Staples talks about the book "Everything I Know About Men I Learned From My Dog."

If you would like to see any other information of the DVD release, I suggest you watch Entertainment Tonight, The Insider, Extra, Inside Edition and Access Hollywood on Monday and Tuesday. And if we are lucky; a Larry King reunion or maybe a Showbiz Tonight tribute.

Entertainment Weekly reviews DVD! (5/07/06)

Too Cool For School

After an early identity crisis Mrs. Garrett and her gaggle of girls learn the secrets of Life

By Jennifer Armstrong

Some 80's sitcoms are fun to watch today in a how-dumb-could-TV-get, I-used-to-watch-this-with-my-babysitter kind of way. Others turned the norms of the day- laugh tracks, corny lines, Important Life Lessons-into a solidly entertaining (if not life-changing) 22 minutes.

The Facts of Life starts out as the former and graduates to the latter-a transformation fascinatingly apparent in this four DVD set. In fact, watching the 29 episodes play out tells you as much about how TV was made back then as it does about Mrs. Garrett and her Eastland girls. It begins as an awkward Diff'rent Strokes spin-off (we used to tolerate awkardness so much more, didn't we?), with Mrs. Garrett (a strong Charlotte Rae) having left her job with Arnold, Willis and Mr. Drummond to play housemother to too many blondes and a gratingly precocious Molly Ringwald at a boarding school.

It then returns for season 2 with some blatant retooling; Mrs. Garret is (wisely) promoted to school dietitian and (fittingly) 25 pounds thinner. And through some serious plot contortions, she gains charge of only the standouts from season 1- charmingly vain Blair (Whelchel), funny girl Natalie (Cohn), and sassy gossip Tootie (Fields)-plus the brilliant addition of tough gal Jo (McKeon).

Of course, there's no comparison between this stuff and the best of today's TV- our Facts-addled brains would have spontaneously combusted if a time traveler had brought us (on VHS, natch) Lost, 24 or heck, even a more direct descendent like The O.C. But that's the point: For better or for worse, they don't make 'em like they used to. It's almost like a different medium, the way Facts confronts its characters with major issues (from racial identity to slut reputations) every week- which, of course always taught them grand truths (racial divisions = bad; slutting = bad)- that never, thank goodness, changed our girls too much. The second season is where Facts found its formula , so it's packed with some of the series' most memorable episodes: Jo goes to a cotillion, Blair's cousin Geri makes her first appearance, Tootie spreads rumors about Mrs. Garrett drinking.

The extras don't quite measure up, lingering too much on the stunted first season's sprawling cast (for those of you dying to know where Julie Anne Haddock and Felice Schacter are now). We hope they're saving some additional more revealing time with Whelchel, Cohn and Fields for future season's DVDs. And while we know not to hold our breath for a McKeon appearance (she dissed the 2001 reunion show, which come to think of it, would make a nice extra too), we would have settled for a good three-way commentary track. But hey, if there's one thing we learned from Facts, it's how to take the good and take the bad.

McKeon confirmed to appear on The Today Show! (5/01/06)

A representative from Lisa Whelchel's website has confirmed that indeed, Nancy McKeon (along with her former cast mates) will be appearing on The Today Show on 5/09/06, as rumored in the last news item.

I'm glad to see that anti-typecast Nancy McKeon is willing to go back to the root of her career 18 years prior to the shows' end to promote the DVD release of the season 1 and season 2 set. Hopefully, her appearence will put an end to the rumors of Nancy McKeon no longer wanting to be associated with the show. Again, don't miss this historical event which airs on 5/9/06 (The day of the DVD release) on The Today Show on NBC.

Cast members to appear on The Today Show to promote DVD release! (4/30/06)

In Lisa's latest "Coffee Talk" entry, she says: "I am flying to New York in two weeks to be on the Today Show and a handful of other national media shows with the other girls to publicize the release of The Facts of Life on DVD."

So, I checked the guide on my TV to see who would be on The Today Show to see who would promote the DVD along with Lisa Whelchel and I was suprised to see what it said for 5/9: '"The Facts of Life" cast members Nancy McKeon, Lisa Whelchel, Kim Fields, and Minday Cohn; author Douglas Brinkley; summer slim down; author Clare Staples." Could this mean that Nancy McKeon will be on with her former cast mates 26 years later to promote the DVD release? If it's true, this is something you definately can't miss!

New Lisa Whelchel article; "Former tv star finds answers in religion"(4/30/06)

FROM: http://www.pal-item.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060423/NEWS01/604230314/1008

"By Rebecca Helmes
Staff writer

Lisa Whelchel guided a group of more than 300 women through The Facts of Life on Saturday at Hillcrest Baptist Church.

The former television star (think of the uppity Blair Warner on The Facts of Life) talked and laughed easily about her experiences on and off set with her co-stars.

And she didn't shy away from talking about God. That is, after all, what she was there for.

Enthusiastic women from 24 Christian churches across Indiana and Ohio came together for an annual Ladies' Refresher -- a time to relax and rejuvenate faith. They listened, laughed and said "Amen" to statements that met their approval during their annual refresher.

Whelchel, the former actress-turned-author, professional speaker, singer and full-time mother of three, tried along with other speakers to encourage the women to live better, more focused Christian lives and to rely on God for guidance.

"I just like to talk about the Lord and what he's done in my life," Whelchel said.

Event organizers Shirley Houston said the women were impressed to find out Whelchel was saved -- meaning she became an evangelical Christian -- when she was just 10 years old.

"It was wonderful," Houston said. "She laughed, had wit."

Whelchel answered questions from the women, including those about her and her former television coworkers. Yes, she and the cast of The Facts of Life are still friends, and Whelchel and Nancy McKeon (Jo from the television show) even live in the same region of California.

Now the author of nine books, Whelchel said she started writing when her son was diagnosed with ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). She needed to come up with creative ways to guide him through his childhood, and she shared some of those in her book "Creative Correction: Extraordinary Ideas for Everyday Discipline." It was published by Tyndale House Publishers and Focus on the Family.

She wanted the women to be inspired by her talk and her books, but knows they might need other sources of guidance, too.

"Even if I had all the time in the world I couldn't give them (women) all the answers," Whelchel said. She just wants people to be drawn to the Lord."

Evidentely, there are things that the writer has mistaken in the article. It says that Lisa Whelchel and Nancy McKeon live in California together, however that is not true; we assume that both now live in Texas together. Since, Nancy McKeon moved to Texas because her husband had lived there. McKeon and Whelchel used to live in California together when the show was taped in Burbank, but that is not the case anymore.

Hallmark Channel's "Wild Hearts" starring McKeon to premiere in July (4/30/06)

The Hallmark Channel movie called "Wild Hearts" starring Nancy McKeon is set to premiere on Saturday, July 15th, 2006 from 9:00pm to 11:00pm eastern.

Summary: "A Los Angeles police man and his teenage daughter find ranch living more challenging than they expected." The movie also stars Halle Hirsch (ER) and Richard Thomas (The Waltons).

Facts of Life Leaves local Chicago station ME-TV (4/10/06)

It appears that The Facts of Life has left the ME-TV line-up as of April 3rd. It's a shame because it didn't have a long run, and I believe it only went through one rotation of the series. Well, atleast for Chicago viewers it was a chance for them to catch all the episodes again. I don't think we'll be seeing anymore episodes on TV until the DVD release this May 9th.

Sony Reveals Back Art of DVD (3/10/06)

Here is the back art of the DVD:

'Facts' on DVD Press Release (3/03/06)

Charlotte Rae, Nancy McKeon, Lisa Whelchel,
Molly Ringwald, Kim Fields, and Mindy Cohn Star in.
Arriving on DVD May 9 in a Four-Disc Set
Guest Stars include Oscar® Winner Helen Hunt, Gary Coleman, Todd Bridges

CULVER CITY, CALIF. (February 27, 2006) Mrs. Garrett and the girls from Eastland Academy make their DVD debut on May 9 when Sony Pictures Home Entertainment releases The Facts of Life: The Complete First and Second Seasons. The collection of 29 episodes from the popular, long-running series featuring an outstanding ensemble cast of young women will be available in a four-disc set and priced at $39.95 SLP.

The Facts of Life stars Charlotte Rae (TVs Diffrent Strokes), along with the young women who were every girls ideal and every boys first crush: Lisa Whelchel (Where the Red Fern Grows), Nancy McKeon (TVs The Division), Mindy Cohn (TVs The Help), Kim Fields (TVs Living Single), Molly Ringwald (Sixteen Candles, The Breakfast Club, Pretty in Pink), Felice Schachter (Zapped!), Julie Piekarski (TVs Best of Times), and Julie Anne Haddack (The Great Santini).

Guest stars the first and second seasons include Conrad Bain, Todd Bridges, Gary Coleman and Dana Plato from Diffrent Strokes, Helen Hunt (TVs Mad About You, As Good As It Gets, Twister), Richard Dean Anderson (TVs MacGyver, Stargate SG-1), Zsa Zsa Gabor (Touch of Evil, Queen of Outer Space), Robert Alda (Rhapsody in Blue, Imitation of Life), Alex Rocco (The Wedding Planner), and comedienne Geri Jewell. Jewell is particularly notable because she was the first person with a visible disability to become a recurring character on a primetime sitcom. During her long run on the show, Jewell broke important new ground by addressing issues of disability awareness.

Set in an exclusive East Coast boarding school, The Facts of Life never shied away from tackling tough subjects facing teenage girls during its 209 episode run. In the first two seasons alone, the series included storylines that dealt with dieting, adoption, athletic competition, divorce, drugs, shoplifting, teenage marriage, gossip, teen suicide, and plagiarism.

The Facts of Life first aired on August 24, 1979, on NBC as a spin-off from the networks phenomenally-popular sitcom Diff'rent Strokes on which Charlotte Rae played Mrs. Garrett, housekeeper to Philip Drummond's household. On The Facts of Life, Mrs. Garrett becomes a dorm housemother at Eastland, an exclusive girls boarding school, where she acts as confidante and surrogate parent to the girls in her charge. The first season involved Mrs. Garrett adjusting to her new job and featured storylines involving the numerous issues besetting tweens.

Needing to sharpen its broad focus, in the second season Mrs. Garrett became the schools nutritionist and the series concentrated its attention on four girls in Mrs. Garretts charge: the wealthy and spoiled debutante Blair (Whelchel), the wisecracking Natalie (Cohn), the sassy Tootie (Fields) and the newly-introduced character of working class tough girl Jo (McKeon), who offered a dynamic counterpoint to the other upper-class teens and gave the series renewed energy and life.

After its somewhat slow start, The Facts of Life found its niche and became a success, ultimately becoming the longest-running sitcom of its time on television, despite numerous timeslot changes over the course of its nine seasons. The show also inspired the TV movies The Facts of Life in Paris (1982), The Facts of Life Down Under (1987) and The Facts of Life Reunion (2001).

DVD Special Features Include:

  • Digitally Mastered Audio and Video
  • Full Screen Presentations
  • Audio: English (stereo)
  • Bonus Previews
  • Featurette: Remembering the Facts of Life
  • Featurette: After Facts
  • Closed Captioned

    The Facts of Life: The Complete First and Second Seasons episodes include:

    First Season

    Rough Housing
    Like Mother, Like Daughter
    Return of Mr. Garrett
    The Date
    Emily Dickinson
    Facts of Love AKA Sex Education
    Flash Flood
    Molly's Holiday

    Second Season

    New Girl I
    New Girl II
    Double Standard
    Who Am I?
    Cousin Geri
    Teenage Marriage I
    Teenage Marriage II
    Breaking Point
    Sex Symbol
    The Secret
    Bought & Sold
    Pretty Babies
    Free Spirit
    Brian & Sylvia

    The Facts of Life: The Complete First and Second Seasons is from the broadcast years of 1979 1981, has a run time of approximately 707 minutes and is not rated.

    DVD is official, cover art included, episodes edited? (2/28/06)

    Read the full story here.

    As you saw in the news item, they listed the runtime for the DVD as 610 minutes. This is not accurate for the DVD, because 610 minutes for 29 episodes totals out to 22 minutes per episode. If they were to be uncut, it would most likely be 710 minutes instead. Let's hope that the episodes on the DVD are uncut, and that 610 minutes isn't the run time.

    Rumored to come out on DVD; May 9th! (2/16/06)

    Read the full story here.

    As you saw in the news item, they gave May 9th as a possible release date for season 1, but you may be thinking "What about season 2?" "Are they still packaging season 1 and 2 together?" or "Did they forget that it was going to be released as a combination of both the seasons?" If you're asking these questions to yourself, we have to clear a few things up. Sony reported to us before, that it will be season 1 and season 2 that will packaged together in one set. So we can assume that both of them will be coming this May 9th. It's possible that they did forget about both of them being packaged together. Unless Sony confirms otherwise, this is certainly the case.

    Calling All Pop Culture Fanatics! (2/11/06)

    If you happen to be a devoted Facts of Life, then you may be qualified for a future game show on VH1 named "The World Series of Poker". If you wish to participate, you and 2 others will compete for one hundred thousand of dollars. For more information to to www.vh1.com and click "shows" then click "casting calls" to submit your interest.

    The Facts of Life coming to DVD earlier than we expected... (1/24/06)

    According to the credible source for TV on DVD news; TV Shows on DVD has let fans know in this news item that the very tentative release date for The Facts of Life DVD set has been pushed to 1-2 months earlier from June (as we previously mentioned it would be released in). No official street date has been announced. But we can assure you that it won't be released before April 4th since those titles have been already announced.

    The Facts of Life coming to DVD this June? (1/21/06)

    I recieved an e-mail this morning from Sony and they let me in on their plans to release The Facts of Life on DVD. I'm sure many of you will find this news as no suprise because of the several signs that Sony has expressed throughout the years. But like many of you though, you are thrilled and excited about the news as I was when I recieved the e-mail. Therefore, I thought I'd spread my joy for it by showing you the e-mail. Which should give you authentic and valid proof that this news is in 'fact' not a rumor or joke that I have made up. With that said, the e-mail should answer all of your questions on Sony's motives as to how (and when) they will release it.

    "I work for Sony Entertainment, and just wanted to let you know that a release for Facts of Life on DVD is tentatively scheduled for June of this year. Right now, it's planned to be a combination of the first two seasons, with all 29 episodes from those first two years. Since the first season of 'Facts' is radically different from the successful later version of the show, they didn't want to release just the first season and risk lower sales. I'll keep you posted as I get information on an official release date."

    To the Facts of Life fans reading this, your voting at TVShowsOnDVD.com and the Sony on DVD has paid off, you have given Sony a reason to release The Facts of Life on DVD!

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