Mooning over Miami

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Looking for the next hot TV program this fall? All roads point to the heat of Miami.

An informal consensus of top media agency executives points to CBS' new show, "CSI: Miami" as the best chance of 38 new network shows to make it to hit status this fall.

Coming from a good pedigree-as the spinoff of the original top-rated drama this past season, "CSI: Crime Scene Investigation"-the rookie show has an excellent chance to extend the CSI brand name.

It's not only good news for this spinoff but for the original show as well. "CSI" could continue to grow in its Thursday night 9 p.m. (ET) time period-and be an even bigger hit than it currently is.

`"CSI' could do better-it hasn't taken a nose dive this summer," says Steve Sternberg, senior VP-director of audience analysis at Interpublic Group of Cos.' Magna Global USA, New York.

More good news for CBS: "Still Standing" is the next on executives' list. This comedy, about a blue-collar Chicago couple working to raise their three children, debuts with one of the best time slots, right after "Everybody Loves Raymond," 9:30 p.m. on Monday night.

"It's much more compatible with `Raymond' than with `Becker,"' says Roy Rothstein, senior VP-director of national broadcast research for Zenith Media Services, New York, jointly owned by Publicis Groupe and Cordiant Communications Group. "It's putting two family shows together."

Another possible contender could be "Boomtown," an unusual NBC police drama that looks at an individual crime from many points of view-police, press, etc.

"I found it the most creatively refreshing show on the schedule," says Shari Ann Brill, VP-director of programming services for Aegis Group's Carat North America, New York. But she adds,"Are viewers going to understand all those characters?"

Other possible contenders this season: "Without A Trace," a CBS drama about the FBI Missing Persons Squad; "American Dreams," an NBC drama about a teen-age girl in the 1960s; "Everwood," a family drama on the WB; and "Girls Club," a Fox drama about women lawyers.

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