There were constant reminders of the diminished influence of broadcast television networks this past week, when entertainment companies Paramount, Disney, Warner Bros. Discovery, NBC Universal and Fox hawked their upcoming wares to advertisers in flashy New York presentations. None was more glaring than the fact that Craig Erwich and Kelly Kahl, chiefs of the ABC and CBS entertainment divisions, watched from the sidelines. (Image: Associated Press)
In Monday’s traditional doubleheader opening of the upfronts in New York, Fox and NBCUniversal executives took shots at the “paywall” strategy of Netflix and Disney, in the first of many salvos expected this week.
The old wall between Fox and Fox News is more of a sheer curtain these days. Evidence of the blurring between the pillars of Rupert Murdoch’s media behemoth can be seen in Rudy Giuliani’s recent turn on entertainment flagship The Masked Singer — and the network brass’ nonchalance over criticism for the casting choice. Brand identity got even blurrier late Monday afternoon, when, for the first time, a “One Fox” upfront pitch to advertisers placed as much emphasis on conservative cable news outfit Fox News Media as it did on the broadcast network, sports division and ad-supported streamer Tubi.
It’s an upfronts miracle: Fox and 20th Television have closed Season 6 renewals of 9-1-1 and The Resident for the 2022-23 season. Negotiations were completed shortly before the Fox upfront presentation’s 4 p.m. ET start on Monday dso the two venerable dramas could be included in the network’s pitch to advertisers.
Fox Entertainment CEO Charles Collier said that the network was trying a “new approach” and giving equal weight to its Tubi streaming service by not outlining where its shows will air in the fall. By not announcing a schedule Monday, the kickoff to the week where broadcast networks unveil their plans in flashy New York presentations, Fox has the flexibility to adjust its schedule depending upon what its competitors do. Above: Michael Chiklis as Dr. Scott Corbett in a scene from the new crime anthology series Accused.
Our Kind of People is no longer Fox’s kind of show. The network has also dropped its comedy Pivoting; both shows lasted a single season at the network. Our Kind of People, from Lee Daniels and Karin Gist was one of Fox’s first straight to series orders – skipping the usual pilot season process as the network attempted to pivot away from traditional development methods.
TV’s annual springtime rite of (anxious) passage known as “Bubble Watch” is coming down to the wire. With the traditional upfront week set to get underway May 16, the five broadcast networks — ABC, CBS, Fox, NBC and The CW — are poised to decide the fate of roughly two dozen in-limbo series.
We may have the first broadcast upfront where a network does not present a fall schedule this year. Fox is said to be considering not unveiling a grid at its May 16 event on the first day of the traditional upfront week. In the untraditional approach the network is mulling, it would have a unified linear and streaming presentation, in which Fox’s new and returning series will be highlighted but the actual fall schedule may be released a few days later. For now, ABC, CBS, NBC and the CW all plan to unveil fall schedules at the upfronts, even as ABC and NBC will only have a fraction of their pilots delivered and screened for consideration by then.
The upstart professional football league’s April 16 season opener will see advertisers paying up to $35,000-$40,000 for a 30-second spot with some hard-sell tactics from NBC and Fox to move inventory.
Fox will be televising the second of three World Cups for which it bought U.S. English-language television rights. ESPN and ABC had U.S. English-language TV rights from 1994 through 2014.
When The Simpsons creative team decided to use American Sign Language in this Sunday’s episode, there was one hitch: The show’s animated characters have only four fingers.
When the competition show returns to Fox for Season 17 on Wednesday, May 18, it’ll do so with an entirely new panel of judges: onetime SYTYCD finalist Stephen “tWitch” Boss, Glee and Broadway alum Matthew Morrison, and robbed Dancing With the Stars runner-up JoJo Siwa. This makes longtime host Cat Deeley the only returning member of the show’s on-camera team.
Vizio said it is beta testing a new ad format called Jump Ads and that Fox is the first programmer to test the feature. Jump ads appear as interactive overlays at the end of a linear TV program. They direct viewers to a supporting app on Vizio SmartCast to continue their viewing experience. In Fox’s execution, the Jump Ad appears at the end of the new series Welcome To Flatch and direct viewers to catch up on past episodes on the Fox Now App, where the first seven episodes of the docu-comedy are streaming.
The musical dramedy starring Scott Foley wrapped its run in December. Meanwhile, NBC has axed fellow rookie Ordinary Joe.
The Gordon Ramsay-led cooking competition has brought in solid ratings in its inaugural run.
Hall of Famer Troy Aikman is expected to leave Fox Sports to become the main analyst for ESPN’s Monday Night Football, the New York Post is reporting. Aikman’s ESPN deal will be for five years, according to sources, and his yearly salary is expected to approach or exceed the neighborhood of Tony Romo’s $17.5 million per year contract with CBS. The deal is not yet signed, but it is near completion.
To be sure, Houston is in a good place these days. The oil industry that fuels the local economy is on solid footing and the region for years has worked to diversify its business portfolio, with the likes of health care, aerospace and the legal profession growing. And the competition among stations for news audiences is robust. ABC owns KTRK and Graham Media has NBC affiliate KPRC. Fox owns KRIV-KTXH, and Tegna has CBS outlet KHOU. Univision owns KXLN and Telemundo holds KTMD.
Berkeley Breathed’s iconic cartoon strip is being developed into an animated series that will comment on current culture with the reclusive creator’s involvement.
Rudy Giuliani was unmasked as an exiting costumed contestant in last week’s taping of the first Season 7 episode of Fox’s popular primetime series The Masked Singer. Deadline hears that as soon as they saw Giuliani, judges Ken Jeong and Robin Thicke quickly left the stage in protest.
Fox Entertainment and Hulu have struck a major deal that allows the streaming service to run all out-of-season episodes of key Fox unscripted and animated series. Hulu will have the right to stream all episodes of Fox’s unscripted series, including The Masked Singer, Lego Masters, I Can See Your Voice, Name That Tune, The Masked Dancer, Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back, MasterChef and MasterChef Junior.
Fox will sizzle and serve up two additional helpings of its hit culinary competition series Hell’s Kitchen, renewing the Gordon Ramsay-led show for Seasons 21 and 22. Last season, Hell’s Kitchen was the No. 1 cooking show on television across broadcast and cable among the key, adults ages 18-49 demo, and its total multiplatform audience grew 8% from Season 19 up to 48% in Season 20’s P2+ streaming audience.
Looking to try to grab a big audience for springtime professional football, the new USFL’s first regular season game will be broadcast live by both NBC and Fox in primetime on April 16. NBC Sports and Fox have split the broadcast rights to the new league under multiyear deals. The game will feature the New Jersey General playing the Birmingham Stallions at Protective Stadium in Birmingham, Ala.
For the first time, Fox Corp. will hold a unified in-person upfront presentation that includes entertainment programming on the Fox broadcast network, as well as pitches for Fox Sports and Fox News, the company said Wednesday. The in-person presentation, set for May 16, will also depart from tradition (or at least pre-pandemic tradition) by leaving midtown Manhattan for lower Manhattan, holding the advertising pitch at an event space that used to be the trading floor for the New York Mercantile Exchange.
Next Level Chef, the cooking competition series from Gordon Ramsay, is getting a post-football slot in the schedule after Fox pushed drama Monarch to the fall. The non-scripted series, which features the British chef and Nyesha Arrington and Richard Blais, will air a special episode on Sunday, Jan. 30, at 10 p.m. after the NFC Championship game.
The network cites COVID-related impacts on production in its decision to move the Susan Sarandon-led series off a Jan. 30 premiere date.
The deals cover 30 markets serving approximately 11 million households and include stations for which Sinclair provides sales and other services to under joint sales agreements or master service agreements.
Ken Jeong and Joel McHale will not be ringing in the new year on Fox. The network has canceled its New Year’s Eve special — Fox’s New Year’s Eve Toast & Roast 2022 — as a result of the rising spread of the Omicron variant of COVID-19.
Will Arnett will return as host and executive producer of the competition show.
A rather unusual spot appearing to be a Fox NFL promo aired during yesterday’s NFL pre-game show. What made it particularly unusual was that it included an EAS-like tone, and had a URL at the bottom of the screen for “WWW.FOXNFLEMERGENCYALERT.COM.” That URL currently links to a “Let’s Go Brandon” website that I don’t encourage you to visit because our own spam software blocks access to it on the stated grounds of “Risky-Sites.”
New series The Cleaning Lady, Pivoting and Monarch are also set for early 2022 premieres at the broadcaster.
Fox has picked up a second season of its popular summer drama series Fantasy Island. The renewal, announced by Fox Thursday, follows strong ratings for the contemporary version of the classic 1977 series, from writer-producers Liz Craft and Sarah Fain. This past summer, the reboot starring Roselyn Sanchez and Kiara Barnes, ranked as the No. 1 new scripted program among adults 18-49 and was Fox’s most streamed new drama series since 9-1-1: Lone Star.
The network has ordered a new version of its dating show Joe Millionaire to debut in January — 19 years after the first iteration of the show became a huge hit. The new show is officially titled Joe Millionaire: For Richer or Poorer and will feature two men courting 20 women. One of the guys is, in fact, a millionaire, and the other decidedly isn’t; the women won’t know which is which at the outset.
The Atlanta Braves’ six-game victory over the Houston Astros averaged 11,750,000 viewers on Fox, the network said Wednesday. This year’s Series averaged a 6.5 rating and 16 share, up from a 5.2 rating/12 share last year.
Michael Thorn, president of entertainment at Fox Entertainment, announced on Thursday that Fox has ordered Grimsburg, an all-new animated comedy starring and executive produced by Hamm. Fully owned by Fox Entertainment and produced by its Emmy winning animation studio Bento Box Entertainment, Grimsburg will premiere in 2023.