TV Upfront

Fox to Stock Thursday With 'Glee,' 'X Factor'

Execs Say 'American Idol' Has 'A Lot of Life' Left

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News Corp.'s Fox network said it would move its slumping teen hit "Glee" to Thursday while adding three comedies and two dramas to the coming fall season.

The network faces an interesting challenge. Fox is routinely ranked No. 1 in the all-important category of audiences between 18 and 49. But much of that success has hinged on its flagship, "American Idol," which is getting long in the tooth and has had ratings declines over the past few seasons.

What's more, several hits that Fox introduced more recently, including "Glee" and freshman sitcom "The New Girl," have seen ratings dwindle as the current season passed.

"The X-Factor," a potential "Idol" successor that premiered last year, has fared well but not as well as "Idol," so Fox is working hard to expand its audience when it returns this fall.

Fox said "The X Factor" will rejoin its schedule for the network's entire two hours of prime time on Wednesday and for an hour on Thursday at 8 p.m., followed by "Glee."

NBC's decision to add a fall version of "The Voice" this year will bring more attention to the genre and to "The X Factor" in the process, said Kevin Reilly, Fox's president-entertainment, in a conference call with journalists. Mr. Reilly promised more information about tweaks to the program, including new hosts.

"Glee" is poised to generate fresh interest in the fall, according to Mr. Reilly, with both Kate Hudson and Sarah Jessica Parker joining for multiepisode arcs. Storylines will focus on new kids at the high school, as well as veteran cast members moving to New York.

Executives also voiced support for "American Idol," though they noted that the program is maturing and does not have as much power as it once did. "We are nowhere near ready to put that show out to stud," said Mr. Reilly. "It's got a lot of life left in it."

Among the programs removed from the schedule are "House," "I Hate My Teenage Daughter" and "The Finder."

Fox will start Mondays at 8 p.m. with veteran procedural drama "Bones," and follow it at 9 p.m. with "Mob Doctor." The new drama focuses on a female Chicago doctor who must practice as she struggles with her family's indebtedness to the mafia.

Fox has stocked Tuesday with comedies. "Raising Hope" returns to the schedule at 8 p.m., followed by new entry "Ben and Kate" at 8:30 p.m. The sitcom centers on a mismatched brother-and-sister duo who try to raise the sister's out-of -wedlock daughter. "New Girl" returns to 9 p.m. and will be followed by "The Mindy Project," a new sitcom featuring writer/producer Mindy Kaling, best known for her work and role on NBC's "The Office." The evening "feels like a very smart, very young" night of comedy that "we will be very proud of ," Mr. Reilly said.

Wednesdays will be devoted to "The X Factor" in the fall and "American Idol" in the spring.

Fox is moving "Touch," a drama featuring Kiefer Sutherland, to Friday at 8 p.m., where it will join "Fringe," which will follow at 9 p.m. Fox said "Hell's Kitchen " will join the Friday lineup in midseason; "Fringe" is expected to end after its arc in the first part of the next season.

Fox said it would run sports programming on Saturdays, a move that ends years of giving the evening to "Cops" and "America's Most Wanted." Last year, the network said "America's Most Wanted" would leave the air, believing that reruns of its dramas and comedies might work better economically. "Cops," however, is expected to make a midseason return.

Fox's Sunday lineup will again feature animated series along with football in the fall. "The Simpsons" will air at 8 p.m, "Bob's Burgers" at 8:30 p.m., "Family Guy" at 9 p.m. and "American Dad" at 9:30 p.m. Football coverage, which is slated to last through the 7 p.m. hour, will be replaced by "The Cleveland Show" after football season ends.

Fox typically rejiggers its schedule for the second half of the season. "The Following" will join Mondays in the winter. The new drama features Kevin Bacon in a "highly serialized" drama that tracks a serial killer, according to Mr. Reilly. "We will play it for 15 weeks," he said. "We will start promoting it out of the [fall] season and drive right through the spring. We think it's our next '24.' "

New Sitcom "The Goodwin Games" will join the Tuesday schedule in the spring. It focuses on three siblings who find they stand to inherit a fortune only if they adhere to the wishes of their deceased father. The program comes from the producers of CBS's veteran "How I Met Your Mother ."

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