Post by: Sal
Showtime will spark up "Weeds" a little earlier than in the past, setting a June premiere date for the fourth season of its acclaimed comedy series.
As was the case last summer, the pay-cable network will pair its veteran show with a newcomer -- in this case, the British import "Secret Diary of a Call Girl." Both shows are scheduled to debut Monday, June 16.
In each of its first three seasons, "Weeds" debuted in August and ran into the fall. The earlier premiere date will let the show air nearly its entire season in the somewhat less competitive summer environment -- though airing in the teeth of the fall schedule didn't hurt the series last year. Showtime doesn't typically reveal its ratings numbers, but in renewing the show the network noted the audience for "Weeds" grew by 19 percent over season two.
The new season, which is scheduled to begin production in April, will rejoin Nancy Botwin (Mary-Louise Parker) as she adjusts to life following the wildfires that burned her home and much of the suburb of Agrestic to the ground.
"Secret Diary of a Call Girl," which has already aired on Britain's ITV2 channel, follows the double life of a young woman played by "Doctor Who" star Billie Piper. Hannah is a legal secretary in London by day, but she's also a high-class call girl who goes by the name of Belle. The series chronicles her attempts to manage her life and keep her night job a secret from her family and friends.
Showtime has also picked up a second season of "Californication," which was paired with "Weeds" last year; a premiere date, however, hasn't been set.