Glee is a musical comedy-drama television series that airs on Fox in the United States. It focuses on the high school glee club New Directions competing on the show choir competition circuit, while its members deal with relationship, sexuality and social issues. The initial main cast encompassed club director and Spanish teacher Will Schuester (Matthew Morrison), cheerleading coach Sue Sylvester (Jane Lynch), guidance counselor Emma Pillsbury (Jayma Mays), Will's wife Terri (Jessalyn Gilsig), and eight club members played by Dianna Agron, Chris Colfer, Kevin McHale, Lea Michele, Cory Monteith, Amber Riley, Mark Salling and Jenna Ushkowitz. For the second season, formerly recurring cast members Mike O'Malley, Heather Morris and Naya Rivera were promoted to the main cast.
The series was created by Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk and Ian Brennan, who first conceived Glee as a film. The pilot episode was broadcast on May 19, 2009, and the first season aired from September 9, 2009 to June 8, 2010. The second season began airing on September 21, 2010, and a third season has been commissioned. Glee features on-screen performance-based musical numbers which are selected by Murphy, who aims to maintain a balance between show tunes and chart hits. Songs covered in the show are released through the iTunes Store during the week of broadcast, and a series of Glee albums have been released by Columbia Records. The music of Glee has been a commercial success, with over thirteen million digital single sales and five million album sales. The series' merchandise also includes DVD and Blu-Ray releases, a young adult book series, an iPad application, and a karaoke game for the Wii.
During its first season, Glee received generally favorable reviews from critics, with Metacritic's weighted average based on the impression of 18 critical reviews of 77 percent. The season was nominated for nineteen Emmy Award, four Golden Globe Awards, six Satellite Awards and fifty-seven other awards, with wins including the 2010 Golden Globe Award for Best Television Series—Musical or Comedy, and Primetime Emmy awards for Lynch, guest-star Neil Patrick Harris and Murphy's direction of the pilot episode.
Ian Brennan conceived Glee based on his own experience as a member of the Prospect High School show choir in Mount Prospect, Illinois. He initially envisioned Glee as a film, rather than a television series, and wrote the first draft in August 2005 with the aid of Screenwriting for Dummies. Mike Novick, a television producer and a friend of Brennan's from Los Angeles, was a member of the same gym as Ryan Murphy, and gave him a copy of Brennan's script. Murphy had been in a show choir in college, and felt he could relate to the script. Murphy and his Nip/Tuck colleague Brad Falchuk suggested that Glee be produced as a television show. The script was entirely rewritten, Brennan, Falchuk and Murphy write all of the show's episodes.
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