Americas Most Wanted

Americas Most Wanted

America’s Most Wanted is not only the longest-running TV series in the history of the FOX network, but the eighth-longest running prime time network show ever and credited for bringing reality television to mainstream. The idea for the show came from other reality crime shows in the 60s and 80s. By the summer of 1987, Fox executive Stephen Chao and Executive Producer Michael Linder had the idea for America’s Most Wanted. It premiered on February 7, 1988 and within four days of the first broadcast convicted killer David James Roberts was captured. The show was canceled for a month and a half in the fall of 1996 but returned after protests from the public, law enforcement, government officials and low ratings for the shows replacing AMW. Among its many accomplishments, AMERICA’S MOST WANTED has helped capture more than 1,100 criminals, including 17 on the FBI’s Ten Most Wanted list. The series has also reunited 61 missing children and persons with their families, which is Walsh’s proudest achievement. In March 2010, President Obama appeared on AMW to congratulate the series on its 1000th milestone episode. America's Most Wanted is an American television program produced by 20th Television, and was the longest-running program of any kind in the history of the Fox Television Network until it was announced on May 16, 2011 that the series was canceled after twenty-three years, with the final episode airing on June 18, 2011. The following September, America's Most Wanted's host, John Walsh, announced that the program would resume on the cable network Lifetime later that year. Presented by Walsh, the show's purpose is to profile and assist law enforcement in the apprehension of fugitives wanted for numerous crimes, including murder, rape, kidnapping, child molestation, white-collar crime, organized crime, armed robbery, gang violence, and terrorism, and also many of whom are currently on the FBI Ten Most Wanted Fugitives list. On May 2, 2008, the program's website announced its 1,000th capture; as of March 30, 2013, 1,202 people have been captured because of AMW. Many of the series' cases have some connection outside the United States or have not taken place in the United States at all. The series' first international capture was in Nova Scotia in 1989. The show's nature does not allow repeats, except for updates on convicted criminals, and is preempted a maximum of eight times during the year; however, if a fugitive featured on the show is not captured, their profile may be aired again. However, since moving to Lifetime, the show aired several repeats with updates if the fugitive/missing person was captured/recovered.
Premiere Date: February 7, 1988 (US)
Casts: John Walsh, Don LaFontaine, Wes Johnson
Air Time: 9pm
Country: US
Air Day: Thursday
Season 26 Episodes

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