Fox Acquires ‘Vacation Friends,’ Pairing Chris Pratt And Anna Faris

By | Tuesday March 25, 2014 @ 9:00am PDT
Mike Fleming

123338918JM013_Moneyball_PrEXCLUSIVE: In a near seven-figure deal, Fox has acquired the spec script Vacation Friends by the sibling scribe team Tom Mullen & Tim Mullen. The plan is for Steve Pink to direct, and for Chris Pratt and … Read More »

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Study: Viewers Love Their TV Stars On Twitter Too

Twitter-Logo__130513233830-150x150

Turns out people love their stars on Twitter almost as much as they love their stars on TV, according to a new study by companies with an intense interest in the results.

Just as importantly for the TV business, fans also like the brands that back the shows they tweet about, according to the study by Twitter, Fox and industry-backed group the Advertiser Research Foundation.

More generally, the TV-related tweets most likely to motivate a viewer to watch will come from an actor on the show or other cast member (40%). That’s well ahead even of tweets from the user’s friends and family (26%), the social-media source that conventional wisdom suggests would be most influential. Perhaps less surprising is the finding that tweets from a show’s official Twitter account motivate barely more than one in six users (just 18%). 

Twitter users and TV tweets graphicMore than 90% of those who see show-related tweets have at some point taken immediate action to watch, search for, or share content, the study says. The majority of those exposed to TV-related tweets immediately take action around the show, are highly likely to watch a show they’ve never watched before, or to resume watching a show that they’d previously stopped watching.

That finding would significantly bump up the importance of Twitter as a way to market and build audience for TV shows, presuming that the program’s stars are engaged in that effort. A few shows have been particularly effective in this regard, such as ABC’s Scandal, whose cast members routinely live tweet and respond to fans through Twitter as each week’s show plays.

Related: ‘Pretty Little Liars’ Spring Finale Tuesday’s Top TV Show With Females 12-34 And Most Tweeted Show Of 2014 To Date

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Fox Sets David James Kelly To Script Next ‘Wolverine’

By | Friday March 21, 2014 @ 5:33pm PDT
Mike Fleming

wolvEXCLUSIVE: Fox has hired David James Kelly to script the next installment of The Wolverine, the X-Men franchise spinoff that James Mangold will direct with Hugh Jackman reprising his signature role. The studio is eyeing a Read More »

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PILOT SEASON 2014: Network Casting Chiefs On This Season’s Biggest Challenges, Casting Coups & Fresh Faces

By | Friday March 21, 2014 @ 5:00pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Network Pilot Casting InterviewsSpring arrived yesterday, bringing the end of the annual two-month mad dash known as pilot casting season. Heading into pilot season this year, there was a lot of concern that the proliferation of original scripted programming on cable and digital platforms would put an additional strain on broadcast pilot casting, further depleting the talent pool. Going head-to-head with the casting of more than a dozen cable and digital pilots/series — including multiple-pilot slates on TNT, Amazon and FX and high-profile series on Viola DavisNetflix, USA and WGA America — the broadcast networks escaped mostly unscathed, successfully casting more that 80 pilots/direct-to-series, with only three comedy pilots rolled because of difficulties finding actors.

RelatedPilot Season 2014: The Overachievers

This pilot season brought an additional wrinkle, with Fox’s Kevin Reilly declaring in January that his network plans to bypass the traditional pilot cycle going forward. There were more straight-to-series and limited/event series orders this season, and several networks started casting a handful of projects early. But overall, it was mostly business as usual, with thousands of castings sessions crammed into eight weeks that resulted in the casting of more that 1,500 roles. We saw Oscar winners and happyendingsnominees like The Help‘s Viola Davis and Octavia Spencer (plus Halle Berry earlier in the season) come to television, TV stars like David Schwimmer, Patricia Arquette, Mary-Louise Parker and Josh Duhamel make a return, and the casts of cancelled shows Happy Endings and Nikita be sought after.

Related: Primetime Pilot Panic!

As we close the book on this year’s casting season, let’s hear from the women (and a man) who were in the middle of it all, leading the casting charge at the broadcast networks. I asked the exhausted heads of casting (“I need a vacation,” one of them exclaimed) Tess Sanchez (Fox), Keli Lee (ABC), Grace Wu (NBC) and Peter Golden (CBS), plus Lori Openden (the CW), whose network doesn’t compete directly with the Big 4 as it targets younger talent, to answer questions about the challenges of this pilot season, progress on cast diversity, their and their competitors’ biggest casting coups, the season’s biggest discoveries, and the toughest roles and types to cast. (Find out how many child actors Fox saw for the Bruce Wayne role in Gotham.) Here are their answers:

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Fox Unveils Dates For ‘Fantastic Four’ & ‘Wolverine’ Sequels, Untitled Marvel Pic

By | Thursday March 20, 2014 @ 10:00pm PDT

20thcent__131112194452-200x107The studio has set aside some real estate three years down the line for a pair of superhero properties and a summer 2018 date for another Marvel pic. Fox said tonight that Fantastic Four 2 — the sequel to … Read More »

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First Image From Fox’s Batman Drama ‘Gotham’: Donal Logue As Harvey Bullock

By | Thursday March 20, 2014 @ 10:00am PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Gotham Fox Donal Logue Harvey BullockHere is a first look at a member of the Batman DC universe from Fox‘s Batman prequel series Gotham. Warner Bros TV has released this image of Donal Logue as Gotham City … Read More »

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Summer Premiere Dates For New And Returning Series On Broadcast And Cable

By | Tuesday March 18, 2014 @ 1:42pm PDT

TV setHere’s a rundown of shows that will hit the airwaves for the first time between June 1 and the start of the 2014-15 TV season, along with those returning for new seasons or coming off hiatus. We will update when new dates are announced:

Related: Midseason Premiere Dates For New And Returning Series On Broadcast And Cable (January Through May)

June 1:
Halt & Catch Fire (AMC, series premiere)

June 2:
Mistresses (ABC, Season 2 premiere)
Beauty And The Beast (The CW, Season 2B premiere)

June 3:
Famous In 12 (The CW, series premiere)

June 4:
Jennifer Falls (TV Land, series premiere)

June 6:
Orange Is The New Black (Netflix, Season 2 premiere)

June 7:
Power (Starz, series premiere)

June 9:
Murder In The First (TNT, series premiere)
Major Crimes (TNT, Season 3 premiere)
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Rachel Dratch Joins Fox Pilot ‘Dead Boss’; Katharine McPhee, Ari Stidham In CBS’ ‘Scorpion’

By | Monday March 17, 2014 @ 3:15pm PDT

Saturday Night Live alum Rachel Dratchracheldratch1 has signed on as a series regular in Fox‘s half-hour pilot Dead Boss, from WBTV and Aaron Kaplan’s Kapital Entertainment. An adaptation of the BBC3 series created by Sharon Horgan and Holly … Read More »

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‘The Simpsons’ Says Goodbye To Marcia Wallace: Video

By | Monday March 10, 2014 @ 6:57pm PDT

wallace__131026072311Bart-weary and rather randy fourth-grade teacher Edna Krabappel made her debut during the first season of The Simpsons nearly a quarter-century ago. Last night, the character and actress behind her were given a final farewell. Marcia Wallace, who diedRead More »

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Fox’s ‘Raising Hope’ Cancelled After Four Seasons

By | Monday March 10, 2014 @ 12:00pm PDT
Nellie Andreeva

Raising Hope Cancelled FoxEXCLUSIVE: It’s the end of the road for Fox‘s quirky family comedy Raising Hope, with the upcoming fourth-season finale serving as series finale. The blue-collar sitcom will bow out with an hourlong farewell on Friday, April 4, featuring back-to-back episodes from 9-10 PM.

Created by Greg Garcia, Raising Hope was the first comedy series in a while to stick at Fox. It proved a good utility player, doing well behind New Girl but also as a 8 PM anchor of the Tuesday comedy block last season. “Getting to know and love the Chance family on Raising Hope has been a sweet, hilarious ride,” said Fox chairman Kevin Reilly and COO Joe Earley. “Thanks to the incredibly talented cast — along with Greg, Mike and the entire crew — for making us laugh for four fantastic seasons.”

Related: 2014 Fox Pilots

Raising Hope had the odds stacked against it going into Season 4. Creator Greg Garcia left the series as part of his move from 20th TV, which produces Raising Hope, to CBS TV Studios. He was succeeded on showrunner duties by Mike Mariano. Then the show was sent to Fridays where it has languished, most recently pulling in a 0.5 18-49 rating this past Friday. Read More »

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President Obama’s ‘Cosmos’ Introduction On 10 Fox Networks Group Channels: Video

“America has always been a nation of fearless explorers who dream big and reach farther than others imagine,” President Obama said as he Cosmosintroduced the series premiere episode of Cosmos: A Spacetime Odyssey tonight on 10 Fox Networks Group Channels, … Read More »

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TV Trailer: Fox’s ‘24: Live Another Day’

By | Saturday March 8, 2014 @ 9:50pm PST

After unveiling the first promo for the upcoming 24: Live Another Day event series during the Super Bowl, Fox has released a new trailer for the new chapter in the 24 franchise. The London-set Live Another Day debuts May 5.

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Obama To Intro Fox & Nat Geo’s ‘Cosmos’ Debut

CosmosFox and Nat GEO‘s reboot of Carl Sagan’s classic Cosmos series is getting some White House lift-off. President Obama will be introducing the series premiere episode this Sunday, March 9 at 9pm ET/PT. A preview of the series screened at the White House as part of their inaugural White House Film Festival on Friday, February 28. Release is below: Read More »

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Fox Gives Early Renewals To ‘Brooklyn Nine-Nine’, ‘The Mindy Project’, ‘New Girl’ & ‘The Following’

By | Friday March 7, 2014 @ 4:00pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

Brooklyn-nine-nineThis is gutsy. Fox has handed early renewals for next season to comedies Brooklyn Nine-Nine, New Girl and The Mindy Project and drama The Following. Golden Globe-winning freshman Brooklyn Nine-Nine is picked up for a second season, Mindy and The Following for a third and New Girl for a fourth. They join three other Fox scripted series that already have been picked up for next season: freshman drama Sleepy Hollow; veteran Bones, renewed for a 10th season; and Glee, which has a final sixth season as part of a two-year pickup. That is a lot of programming already locked in for next season though Fox has extra holes to fill following the cancellation of The X Factor. Networks are not required to make any renewal decisions until May, and most wait to see their pilots before making decisions. Fox, of course, declared in January that it was breaking away from the pilot cycle, so the network also may be going on its own timetable with renewals. But most of all, today’s pickups are about Fox brass giving a vote of confidence to series they feel strongly about creatively.

Related: Fox’s Abolishment Of Pilot Season: Practical Guide To How Will It Work

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Dave Annable Joins Fox’s ‘Red Band Society’; Aaron Ashmore In ABC’s ‘Agatha’

By | Friday March 7, 2014 @ 12:15pm PST

annableDave Annable (Brothers & Sisters, 666 Park Avenue) has nabbed a series regular role in Fox’s Red Band Society, from Amblin TV and ABC Studios. It is a coming-of-age drama that explores with dark humor the daily lives of a group of teenagers living in a hospital who become unlikely friends. Annable, repped by CAA and Barking Dog Entertainment, will play Dr. William McAndrew, a rock star pediatric oncologist and surgeon who tries not to get too attached to his young patients.

Related: 2014 Fox Pilots

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Fox Orders Season 3 Of ‘MasterChef Junior’

By | Wednesday March 5, 2014 @ 11:30am PST

MC JR WINNERFox ordered a second season of Gordon Ramsay‘s cooking competition series MasterChef Junior only in December, but today said that it has added a third installment of eight episodes. Production on both Season 2 and … Read More »

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Music Producer Timbaland Joins Fox Drama Pilot ‘Empire’

By | Tuesday March 4, 2014 @ 10:30am PST
Nellie Andreeva

Fox‘s hip-hop industry drama Empire continues timbalandto add boldface names. Top music producer/songwriter Timothy “Timbaland” Mosley is the latest to board the pilot starring Terrence Howard and Taraji P. Henson, which hails from Lee Daniels, Danny Strong and Imagine’s Brian Grazer. Timbaland will serve as songwriter and song producer on Empire, a family drama set in the world of a hip-hop empire, which will feature a mix of new and existing music. Timbaland’s involvement resembles Nashville‘s signing of T Bone Burnett for the pilot and the first season. Empire centers on Lucious Lyon (Howard), a charismatic, savvy music superstar who is about to take his company, Empire Entertainment, public. Raised on the streets, he has never backed away from a fight and will resort to any measures, fair or foul, to defend his beloved Empire. Read More »

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‘Touch’ Star David Mazouz To Play Bruce Wayne In Fox Batman Drama ‘Gotham’

By | Tuesday March 4, 2014 @ 10:00am PST
Nellie Andreeva

David MazouzTwelve-year-old David Mazouz, who played the young lead opposite Kiefer Sutherland in Touch, is taking on a lead role in another Fox drama series, the Batman prequel Gotham. He will play the iconic comic book … Read More »

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Fox’s ‘Rake’ Moves To Fridays, Thursday’s ‘American Idol’ Shifts To 9 PM, Paired With ‘Hell’s Kitchen’

By | Monday March 3, 2014 @ 6:00pm PST
Nellie Andreeva

rakefoxFox‘s new drama Rake has faced the inevitable after the new series low of 0.8 in adults 18-49 last Thursday. The network is moving the underperforming series to Fridays beginning next week. Season 12 of Gordon Ramsay’s utility … Read More »

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