March 7, 2014

THE SKED Renewal Day At FOX


FOX’s cancellation of THE X FACTOR means that it starts next fall knowing that it has 3 hours of primetime to fill.  The network isn’t going to want much more than that on its plate–for marketing reasons, if nothing else–which today proved to be good news for some of its bubble shows.  Both BROOKLYN NINE-NINE and THE MINDY PROJECT received early 2014-15 renewals, joining NEW GIRL (which has its own ratings problems, but is a cut more successful than the other two, and is closer to the profitability plateau of post-network sales) and the midseason-only THE FOLLOWING.

Of the quartet, the last is probably the most surprising:  apart from FOX’s other fall needs, both Mindy and Brooklyn are critical favorites that draw young, affluent, educated audiences that earn premiums from advertisers, but The Following is a grim piece of work that’s been on a downward trajectory.  One would expect–or, at any rate, hope–that a new season would mean an end to the Joe Carroll storyline and a fresh psychopath for Kevin Bacon’s Ryan Hardy to pursue.  (Note:  The Following will presumably be a short order as usual, but we don’t know if all the other renewals are for full 22-episode orders.)  The early renewal announcements will allow the shows to get a jump in line to make deals with desirable writer/producers, as well as giving the showrunners and their staffs extra time to get things in place for next season.

FOX had already taken care of its Sunday animations, as well as renewing SLEEPY HOLLOW, BONES and GLEE (the latter for its official final season, although the same could end up being true for Bones), so there aren’t many shows left on its bubble:  ALMOST HUMAN, DADS, RAISING HOPE and ENLISTED .  (And technically RAKE, although cast members of that show are already signing for new pilots, so unless it has a miraculous turnaround when it moves to Fridays next week, it’s probably dead.)


About the Author

Mitch Salem
MITCH SALEM has worked on the business side of the entertainment industry for 20 years, as a senior business affairs executive and attorney for such companies as NBC, ABC, USA, Syfy, Bravo, and BermanBraun Productions, and before that, at the NY law firm of Weil, Gotshal & Manges. During all that, he has more or less constantly been going to the movies and watching TV, and writing about both since the 1980s. His film reviews also currently appear on and In addition, he is co-writer of an episode of the television series "Felicity."