TV Upfront

Fox Answers Last-Place Finish With Prime-Time Shakeup

'Minority Report' to Follow 'Gotham,' 'New Girl' Shuffled to January From Fall

By Published on .

Reprints Reprints

The original 'X-Files.'
The original 'X-Files.' Credit: Fox

In response to its last-place finish in the seasonal ratings race, Fox has shaken up its prime-time schedule like a balky Etch A Sketch, revamping Tuesday nights altogether while adding new dramas on Mondays and Wednesdays.

While the one-hour Tuesday comedy block has survived, it is being moved back to the 8 p.m. slot and will be populated by two new single-cams. Starring "Full House" vet John Stamos as a selfish single guy who discovers that he's a father -- cue the sound of a needle scratching a record -- and a grandfather at the same time, "Grandfathered" will be paired with the Rob Lowe legal comedy "The Grinder."

Conspicuous by its absence on fall Tuesdays is "New Girl"; the Season 5 premiere of the Zooey Deschanel vehicle has been shuttled to January, where it will be paired with the new ensemble comedy "The Guide to Surviving Life."

Moving "New Girl" to midseason will allow Fox to air it without the usual glut of World Series preemptions and repeats. Once one of the highest-rated broadcast comedies, "New Girl" this season hit a series low, averaging just 2.72 million viewers and a 1.3 rating among adults 18-49, per Nielsen live-plus-same-day data.

The two new comedies will lead into Ryan Murphy's anthology horror-comedy mashup, "Scream Queens," which he recently characterized as "'Heathers' meets 'Friday the 13th.'" A star-studded whodunit from the showrunner who brought you FX's "American Horror Story," "Scream Queens" features Emma Roberts, Jamie Leigh Curtis and Lea Michele.

After turning network TV on its ear with an historic first season, "Empire" reclaims its Wednesday 9 p.m. time slot, where it will lead out of the Morris Chestnut medical-crime drama, "Rosewood." While Fox in 2012 tried a similar blend of genres in the utterly forgettable "The Mob Doctor," "Rosewood" is being positioned as a close-ended procedural rather than a serialized drama.

Fox's other newly-minted hit, the Batman origin story "Gotham," also will be hitched to a new series. Based on the 2002 Steven Spielberg theatrical, "Minority Report" will lead out of "Gotham" in the Monday 9 p.m. slot.

Fox is holding a few high-profile premieres for midseason, scheduling a two-night premiere for "The X-Files" that is almost guaranteed to draw a crowd. The first hour of "The X-Files" is set to bow Sunday, Jan. 24, following the NFC Championship Game, which should give the show a lead-in of around 50 million viewers.

"The X-Files" slips into its regular time slot on Monday, Jan. 25, at 8 p.m. Fox has ordered six episodes of Chris Carter's iconic series.

Also in the wings for midseason are "The Frankenstein Code," "Lucifer" and Seth MacFarlane's animated comedy "Bordertown." The latter was actually introduced during last year's upfront presentation.

Fox's fall 2015 schedule is as follows. New shows are in ALL CAPS:

8-9 P.M. — "Gotham"

8:30-9 PM. — "THE GRINDER"

8-9 P.M. — "ROSEWOOD"
9-10 P.M. — "Empire"

8-9 P.M. — "Bones"
9-10 P.M. — "Sleepy Hollow"

8-9 P.M. — "MasterChef Junior"
9-10 P.M. — "World's Funniest"

7-10:30 P.M. — College Football

7-7:30 P.M. — "NFL on Fox"
7:30-8 P.M. — "The OT"/ "Bob's Burgers"
8-8:30 P.M. — "The Simpsons"
8:30-9 P.M. — "Brooklyn Nine-Nine"
9-9:30 P.M. — "Family Guy"
9:30-10 P.M. — "The Last Man on Earth"

In this article:
Most Popular