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Monday June 21st, 2021 1:05PM

NBC sets November return for 'This Is Us,' 'Chicago' dramas

By The Associated Press
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LOS ANGELES (AP) — An optimistic NBC said Thursday it will bring “This Is Us” and other scripted series back in November despite the TV industry's coronavirus-caused production shutdown that's only beginning to ease.

Broadcast TV's usual robust September start to the new season has already bowed to the pandemic, with NBC and other networks relying heavily on reality and acquired series that month.

“This Is Us,” the family drama starring Mandy Moore and Milo Ventimiglia, will kick off its fifth season on Nov. 10, the network said.

That will be followed by the Nov. 11 return of the “Chicago” drama franchise: “Chicago Fire,” “Chicago P.D.” and “Chicago Med.”

The Mariska Hargitay-led “Law & Order: SVU” will start its record-building 22nd season on Nov. 12, followed by ”The Blacklist," starring James Spader and Megan Boone, on Nov. 13.

“Connecting,” a new comedy about friends using video chats to remain bonded despite pandemic isolation, will debut Oct. 1. It's the only one of NBC's planned scripted shows in production.

Singing contest “The Voice” and coaches Kelly Clarkson, John Legend, Blake Shelton and Gwen Stefani will be back at work on Oct. 19, with comedy series "Superstore” set for Oct. 22.

Early fall will be home to "Transplant,” a drama imported from Canada that debuts Sept. 1, and the competition series “American Ninja Warrior,” back on Sept. 7.

“Weakest Link,” with Jane Lynch as host of a new version of the original British series debuting Sept. 28, and the Oct. 6 return of Ellen DeGeneres' “Ellen’s Game of Games.”

The returning NBC series set to air after Jan. 1 include “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “Good Girls,” “Making It,” “Manifest,” “New Amsterdam” and “Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist.”

With the exception of “The Voice” and “NBC Sunday Night Football,” which plans a Sept. 10 return, all series will be available on new streaming service Peacock after airing on NBC.

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