It’s a show that has been on the brink of cancellation, officially canceled on Fox, then rescued by Hulu. To say The Mindy Project has endured a winding road on the small screen would be as understated as one of the outfits worn by its titular character, Mindy Lahiri.
The Universal Television-produced Hulu comedy will begin airing on both cable networks in October as part of syndication deal.
The move to Hulu is bringing a new level of creative freedom to The Mindy Project that cast and crew members are clearly relishing. The flexibility of moving from Fox to the commercial-free environment of Hulu allows them longer running times to let the show breathe and showcase its ensemble cast, creator/exec producer Mindy Kaling said Sunday at the Television Critics Association press tour.
Hulu’s announcement Friday signals a resurrection for the comedy, which had just been canceled by Fox, where it aired for three seasons. Hulu subscribers will be able to stream past and future episodes of the series exclusively on Hulu.
The Mindy Project will return for a fourth season — and possibly more — on Hulu. Sources say that Fox has passed on bringing back the critically acclaimed but low-rated series for a fourth season, with studio Universal Television now in talks with Hulu for a multiple-season renewal for the Mindy Kaling romantic comedy. Hulu and Universal Television declined comment, but sources say that the renewal would likely be for two seasons.
Fox’s Tuesday comedies saw solid growth for their season finales last night, though they still posted relatively low ratings. The Mindy Project jumped 18% over last week in the 9:30 p.m. timeslot, to a 1.3 adults 18-49 rating, outdrawing lead-in New Girl, a rarity. Girl posted a 1.2 at 9 p.m., growing 9% from last week’s series-low 1.1. Both shows have already been renewed for next season. NBC’s The Voice was the night’s No. 1 program with a 2.4 at 8 p.m., though that was a series low for the singing program and down 11% from last week.
Hulu is padding its growing list of exclusive SVOD rights to primetime series. The streaming service announced Tuesday that previous seasons of Fox series The Mindy Project and Brooklyn Nine-Nine will be available only on Hulu Plus (and not rivals Netflix or Amazon Prime). In addition, a slew of series from NBC Universal-owned cable channels Bravo and E! will make backlogs of previous episodes from long-running series available only on Hulu Plus as well.
Fox has handed out early renewals for next season to comedies Brooklyn Nine-Nine, New Girl and The Mindy Project and drama The Following.
Fox is rethinking its midseason schedule, and it’s not a huge vote of confidence for comedies The Mindy Project and Dads. Both series will go on hiatus in early winter, and, beginning Feb. 25, Glee will get an earlier than expected spring premiere in its old time slot of 8 p.m. on Tuesdays. The only series that won’t move in the current two-hour comedy block is New Girl, which will continue to air at 9 p.m.
Fox has given renewals to midseason drama The Following and Tuesday comedies New Girl, Raising Hope and The Mindy Project. They join recently renewed veteran Bones, with negotiations for a fifth season of Glee ongoing.
At the TCA this morning, the network says it will give viewers an early look at Ben and Kate and The Mindy Project between Aug. 27 and Sept. 9 on Facebook, Yahoo!, Hulu, AOL, MSN, Fox.com, Xfinity and other outlets.