Sports Emmys: ESPN, Fox Top Networks

ESPN and Fox shared bragging rights as the 41st annual Sports Emmys were handout out Tuesday night. They tied atop the network leaderboard with seven wins apiece. ESPN scored one more nod to lead all sports groups, as it came into the night with the most nominations (58) to Fox Sports Media Group’s 48. CBS’s coverage of the Masters won the marquee Outstanding Live Sports Special category, and the network also scooped the Outstanding Live Sports Series for its NFL on CBS.

EARNINGS CALL

Political Ads Booming For Fox O&Os

Political is pacing more than 50% ahead of the equivalent period four years ago CEO Lachlan Murdoch tells analysts. Apart from political, COO John Nallen said it is “remarkable to see how quickly local advertising is coming back.”

Fired ‘Simpsons’ Composer Alf Clausen Sues Disney, Fox

‘Empire’ Cookie Spinoff In The Works

Denis Leary Inks Broadcast Development Deal At Fox

TVN TECH

TVN Tech | NextGen TV Racing For Scale

Around 10 markets should be on-air with 3.0 broadcasts by the end of the third quarter and perhaps 20 by year’s end, according to representatives of Pearl TV and BitPath. Broadcasters are also exploring the full capabilities of the NextGen standard with several new initiatives this summer, including the launch of a NextGen-capable smartphone and a trial of advanced alerting capabilities in Washington, D.C. Above, one of the six 2020 LG OLED sets that have earned the NextGen TV logo from the Consumer Technology Association.

Baseball’s Return Helps Fox Reel In A ‘Tsunami’ Of Advertising Dollars

Pent-up demand for sports is translating into major advertising bucks, according to Fox, which is kicking off baseball season with its first-ever-triple header on Saturday. The advertising inventory for the nine-hour block of games is sold out, according to Fox’s head of sports sales, Seth Winter.

Fox Sets Fall Return Dates For Animated Fare

The Simpsons, the Harts, the Belchers and the Griffins will see you in September. New episodes of The Simpsons (Season 32), Bless the Harts (Season 2), Bob’s Burgers (Season 11) and Family Guy (Season 19) premiere Sunday, Sept. 27 on Fox,. Additionally the second season of Duncanville will premiere in 2021.

Baseball Advertisers Get Ready For Big New Swing

Baseball advertising appears to have pivoted from a months-long slump to hitting above average. Fox Corp. has sold more than 90% of its ad inventory in its share of games in Major League Baseball’s pandemic-truncated 2020 season, as well as all the ad berths in its planned broadcast of four games slated to air this Saturday on Fox Broadcasting and Fox Sports 1. Meanwhile,  Home Team Sports, the Fox-owned unit that sells ad time on 44 regional sports networks, is trying to accommodate a new rush of advertisers trying to get time in local broadcasts.

Nick Cannon To Remain Fox’s ‘Masked Singer’ Host After His Apology

Fox Extends Options On All Pilots

The network, which has a coronavirus-proof fall schedule, will aim to film its four dramas and two comedies as soon as it’s safe to do so.

NBC Gets US Open As Fox Bails

Multiple sources told the Associated Press Sunday Night that the deal began to take shape this month, especially with the U.S. Open being moved to September during the opening month of the NFL. One person said Fox was contemplating moving the U.S. Open to FS1, an idea that was rebuffed by Mike Davis, the CEO of the USGA. That led to deeper conversations about the contract and how it could be resolved.

‘Simpsons’ To Recast Non-White Characters

The Simpsons won’t have any repeats of Hank Azaria voicing Apu. The producers behind the show issued a statement Friday saying that from now on, its characters of color will be voiced by actors of color only.

Mike Henry To Stop Voicing Black Character On ‘Family Guy’

LOS ANGELES (AP) — “Family Guy” voice actor Mike Henry said Friday he is stepping down from the role of Cleveland Brown on the Fox animated series. Henry wrote on Twitter that he will stop playing the show’s main African American character because “persons of color should play characters of color.” The 54-year-old voice actor, who is […]

Fox Renews ‘The Great North’ For Season 2 Ahead Of Series Premiere

Fox Shelves ‘So You Think You Can Dance’

The door, however, remains open for the Fox franchise to return in summer 2021.

Project OAR: Ready For Live TV Deployments

The first phases of dynamic, addressable advertising trials include participation from Fox, ViacomCBS, NBCUniversal, Scripps, AMC Networks, Disney Media Networks, Discovery, Hearst Television and WarnerMedia.

Fox Sees Improvement In Local Ad Market

Fox said it is seeing improvements in advertising sales at its station group as more businesses re-open after closing to slow the spread of the coronavirus. Speaking Tuesday at the Credit Suisse 22nd Annual Virtual Communications Conference, Fox COO John Nallen said he expected lost revenue to be on the low-end of the $200 million to $240 million range the company forecast when it reported earnings in May.

TV Nets Resisting Ad Rate Cuts

The nation’s big media companies are trying to avoid great pressure from advertisers and media buyers to take severe cutbacks in ad rates in early talks as part of the industry’s annual upfront ad market, according to three executives familiar with discussions. Their pushback suggests owners of networks like CBS, NBC, ABC and Fox are betting that a return of favorite TV elements like sports will draw new interest from sponsors and generate more demand for TV commercials — and potentially help them avoid capitulating to the most onerous demands.

DirecTV Keeps Fox In Local Channel Fight

AT&T has reached a multi-year deal with Fox to allow DirecTV to offer the network’s programming in approximately 12 rural markets where the satcaster does not provide local channels.

AT&T, Fox Strike STELAR-Related Carriage Deal

AT&T has struck a multi-year deal with Fox to continue to deliver its TV stations via DirecTV after the sunset of the blanket license. AT&T said it has been negotiating with all the networks to continue to deliver signals to truckers, RVs and others after Congress passed a bill, the Satellite Television Extension and Localism Act Reauthorization, that ended the blanket license June 1, requiring AT&T to negotiate individual deals if it wanted to continue to import distant network TV signals to markets and subs who lacked a local version.

Fox Renews ‘Prodigal Son’ For Season 2

Across its 20-episode freshman run, Prodigal Son averaged a 0.75 demo rating and 3.4 million total viewers (in Live+Same Day numbers). Out of the seven dramas Fox aired this TV season — three of which have ended or already been canceled — it ranked third in the demo (trailing the two 9-1-1s) and fourth in audience. It also enjoys the largest increases via DVR playback of any Fox series.

Fox Cancels ‘Outmatched’ After One Season

Fox has canceled the multi-camera comedy Outmatched after one season. It was one of a handful of shows absent from Fox’s schedule for the 2020-21 season when the network announced it last week.

Sherri Shepherd Joining Fox’s ‘Dish Nation’

Sherri Shepherd, longtime former co-host of The View, is set to join Fox syndicated series Dish Nation as co-host in August. She had served guest stints on the entertainment show in November and December of 2019

Fox Renews ‘Last Man Standing,’ ‘The Resident’

Fox has officially renewed two more series for next season, flagship comedy Last Man Standing, headlined by Tim Allen, and medical drama The Resident, starring Matt Czuchry and Emily VanCamp. Both come from 20th Century Fox TV and both had been a lock to come back.

Broadcast Nets Buying ‘Gently Used’ Shows

L.A.’s Finest, Tell Me a Story and Swamp Thing are cornerstones of Fox and The CW’s fall schedules, but all three shows aired on other platforms more than a year ago.

Fox Sets Corona-Proof Fall 2020 Schedule

Amid a coronavirus pandemic, which ground filming to a halt, decimated broadcast pilot season and canceled the traditional May upfronts, Fox unveiled its fall 2020 schedule at the exact time it would’ve done it without the pandemic. It includes the network TV debut of Spectrum Originals’ L.A.’s Finest starring Gabrielle Union and Jessica Alba, which the network has acquired from Sony Pictures TV.

MARKET SHARE

Gordon Ramsey Rebuilding Town Hit By Massive Floods

Brady’s Move Posed Challenges For Networks

“I can’t think of a single player move ever that adjusted requests and turned the process upside down as much as this,” said Fox Sports SVP Michael Mulvihill about Brady signing with Tampa Bay. “I think the league treated everyone well with Tampa Bay because they knew how great everyone’s interest was. It was a significant curveball.”

‘The Masked Singer’ Renewed For Season 4

Expect more celebrities in crazy costumes as Fox is bringing back The Masked Singer for Season 4. The renewal was unveiled Wednesday during Fox’s investors earnings call. It comes as the third season of the quirky entertainment show, which features celebrities donning outlandish outfits to sing famous cover versions, is heading to its finale May 20.

QUARTERLY REPORT

Fox Corp. Revenue Surges 25%

Fox said revenue for its fiscal third quarter ending March 31 jumped 25% to $3.44 billion, beating estimates, as ad revenues swelled 44% on SuperBowl LIV. The company announced numbers after the closing bell Wednesday. Shares ended up more than 3% ahead of earnings.

Fox Sets Star-Studded ‘Celebrity Watch Party’

The unscripted series, based on a British format, will feature famous people at home discussing the best TV of the week. It’s set to premiere May 7 with the debut episode featuring Rob Lowe, Meghan Trainor, Joe Buck, Raven-Symoné, Master P and Romeo, JoJo Siwa, Steve Wozniak, Curtis Stone, and Robert and Kym Herjavec.

Broadcast Nets To Air Graduation Special

With the Class of 2020 unable to throw their caps in the air this year due to the coronavirus, LeBron James is putting on a special graduation celebration. The NBA superstar will host the virtual ceremony for the more than 3 million high school seniors. The one-hour special, Graduate Together: America Honors the High School Class of 2020, will air simultaneously across all broadcast platforms — ABC, CBS, Fox and NBC — and on a host of leading entertainment, social media and streaming platforms

‘Empire’ Creators Confirm Early Finale

It’s official: next week’s 18th episode of Empire’s sixth season, airing on April 21, will be the hip-hop family drama’s finale for the foreseeable feature, and quite possibly a series finale. In separate statements, Empire creators/executive producers Lee Daniels and Danny Strong addressed the abrupt ending of their show due to the coronavirus pandemic while holding out hope that they could film a proper finale one day.

‘9-1-1’ And Spinoff Renewed For 2020-21

Fox Entertainment continues with its early renewals, picking up flagship drama series 9-1-1 for a fourth season and its breakout spinoff 9-1-1: Lone Star for a second. The network already has renewed its freshman animated series Bless the Harts and Duncanville for next season and also has The Simpsons and Family Guy set to return next fall.

Fox Slots ‘Tiger King’ Special From TMZ

Fox is jumping on the Tiger King bandwagon with a quickie special from TMZ delving into the subjects of the Netflix docuseries. The hourlong special, titled TMZ Investigates: Tiger King — What Really Went Down?, will feature TMZ head Harvey Levin, interviews with people connected to the case of Joseph Maldonado-Passage, aka Joe Exotic, and “never-before-seen footage.” It is set to air Monday.

Fox Renews ‘Duncanville’ For Season 2

Fox is booking a return trip to Duncanville. The animated comedy, co-created by and starring Amy Poehler, has been picked up for Season 2, TVLine has learned. Duncanville marks the second freshman comedy to be renewed at the broadcast network, following fellow animated rookie Bless the Harts, which secured a Season 2 order back in October.

Deputy’ Canceled At Fox After One Season

The rookie drama starred Stephen Dorff, who had one of last season’s biggest talent deals for the series from Entertainment One. The series launched in January to lackluster reviews and, after completing its 13-episode run, has a 40% and 57% rating among critics and viewers on aggregation site RottenTomatoes.com.

Fox Cancels ‘Deputy’ After One Season

TVN TECH

TVN Tech | COVID-19 Speeding Broadcasters’ Shift To Cloud

The coronavirus pandemic has amped up the transition to cloud-based workflows as broadcasters have employed as many remote operations as possible. The next frontier: an acceleration of live production applications in the cloud. Above, an Amazon Web Services Outpost cloud server.