1996 in television


1996 in television

The year 1996 in television involved some significant events.Below is a list of television-related events in 1996.

"For the American TV schedule, see: 1996-97 United States network television schedule."

Events

*January 1 - "Speedvision" premiered as a new cable channel. It changed its name to the "Speed Channel" in 2002.
*January 15-March 11 - "Our Friends in the North", a nine-part serial spanning the 1960s to the 1990s in the lives of four friends, is shown on BBC2.
*January 28 - Chris Isaak and Brooke Shields make guest appearances on the television show "Friends".
*April 29- TV Land, a United States cable network launches.
*May 14 - "Doctor Who", an American television movie continuation of the famous British series of the same name, airs on the Fox Network in the "Tuesday Night Movie" slot. This television movie is regarded as being a part of the same story as the original series and is an unsuccessful pilot for a new, American co-produced series. Paul McGann stars as the Eighth Doctor. It was the only film considered canon, but "Doctor Who" only made a proper comeback in 2005
*June 14 - After 32 years (barring six months in 1973), "Top of the Pops" moves from its traditional Thursday evening slot to Fridays.
*July - When it becomes evident that Anna Stuart will be next to die in a serial killer storyline on "Another World", many fans start letter-writing campaigns to save the actress; the NBC studios in New York City also report a high number of switchboard calls regarding Stuart's imminent demise. Executive producer Jill Farren Phelps decides that actress Alice Barrett will be killed off the show instead.
*14-15 July - America's Talking ceases transmissions, and using its transponders and positions, MSNBC, a joint venture of Microsoft and NBC, launches the following morning.
*September 1 - Sky 2 launches in the UK, a sister channel to Sky One. It closes a year later, but a channel of almost the same name (Sky Two) would later launch in 2005.
*September 2 - The ITV region Tyne Tees Television is rebranded as "Channel 3 North East". The rebranding is unsuccessful, and the original name returns two years later.
*September 13 - The dubbed version of the Japanese series "Dragonball Z" premieres in the U.S.
*September 17 - The O.J. Simpson civil trial begins.
*October 7 - News Corporation gets into the cable news fray with the launch of Fox News Channel.
*October 20 - "Canada's Sesame Street" switches to showing exclusively Canadian content, renaming itself "Sesame Park" (1996-2002), as it no longer uses any American made segments from "Sesame Street"
*November 2 - Final episode of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles, the 1987 series airs. Episode is Divide and Conquer.
*December 15 After five years away the greatest soap returns to tv for a one/off tv movie. Dallas which was cancelled in 1991 returns and we find out did J.R commit suicede. The reunion movie is called J.R returns. And all the cast members are back including sue ellen who went to london during the 11th season.
*December 29 - "Time On Our Hands", the final episode of a Christmas trilogy of the popular sitcom "Only Fools and Horses", airs on BBC1. Publicised as the last ever episode, it draws 24.35 million viewers, the largest ever audience for a sitcom in the UK, and discounting Diana, Princess of Wales's funeral, the biggest UK television audience of the 1990s. In the event, however, the show returns for three subsequent specials, one shown each Christmas from 2001.
*Zenith introduces the first HDTV-compatible front projection TV in the U.S. Broadcasters, TV & PC manufacturers set industry standards for digital HDTV.
*Over a billion households worldwide now own television sets.

Debuts

Births

*April 14 - Abigail Breslin, actress

Deaths

*February 3 - Audrey Meadows, actress (Alice Kramden on "The Honeymooners")
*February 13 - Martin Balsam, actor (Murray on "Archie Bunker's Place")
*February 15 - McLean Stevenson, actor (Lt. Col. Henry Blake on "M*A*S*H")
*February 15 - Tommy Rettig, former child actor (Jeff on "Lassie")
*March 4 - Minnie Pearl, comedian
*March 5 - Whit Bissell, character actor
*March 9 - George Burns, 100, comedian
*March 11 - Vince Edwards, actor ("Ben Casey")
*April 21 - Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder, sports commentator
*May 20 - Jon Pertwee, 76, former star of "Doctor Who".
*June 2 - Ray Combs, 40, former host of "Family Feud".
*June 16 - Mel Allen, sports commentator
*July 21 - Herb Edelman, actor (Stanley Zbornak on "The Golden Girls")
*August 27 - Greg Morris, actor ("")
*September 13 - Tupac Shakur, 25, actor/songwriter.
*September 29 - Leslie Crowther, 63, British TV comedian & game show host
*October 6 - Ted Bessell, actor ("That Girl")
*October 27 - Morey Amsterdam. actor and comedian (Buddy on "The Dick Van Dyke Show")
*December 8 - Howard E. Rollins, Jr., actor (Tibbs on the TV version of "In the Heat of the Night")
*December 11 - Willie Rushton, 59, comedian, actor, and performer.
*December 12 - Larry Gates, soap opera actor ("Guiding Light")


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