Fox Announces 2009-2010 Primetime Slate

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Fox is the first out of the gate to announce its primetime slate for the 2009-2010 season. It includes four new comedies, two new dramas and one late-night show. Here is the full press release:

Peter Rice, Chairman, Entertainment; and Kevin Reilly, President, Entertainment, Fox Broadcasting Company, today unveiled the FOX primetime schedule for the 2009-2010 television season to the national advertising community during its annual Programming Presentation at New York City Center.

“As the No.1 network for the last five years, FOX is the first place viewers go to connect with the stories and characters they love,” said Rice. “With next year’s slate of distinctive shows, we’re continuing to invest in creativity to give viewers the rich, emotional experience they can only get on television.”

Reilly added, “The strategic moves we made last year to build off of our biggest assets are paying off. We’ve created stability and consistently strong performance across the week. Next season, we’re bringing back two top-rated sophomore dramas and using our hits to introduce a broad and compelling slate of new shows that will make our air even more vibrant and alive.”

After a special preview event airing Tuesday, May 19 (9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT), GLEE, the distinctive new comedy from Ryan Murphy (“Nip/Tuck”) starring Jane Lynch (“The 40 Year Old Virgin”) and newcomers Matthew Morrison (Broadway’s “Hairspray”), Lea Michele (“Spring Awakening”) and Cory Monteith (“Kyle XY”), will enter its freshman year this fall. Combining biting humor with a soundtrack of hit music from past to present, the inventive series follows an optimistic high school teacher who against all odds attempts to restore McKinley High’s fading Glee Club to its former glory, while helping a group of underdogs realize their true star potential.

Two additional new comedies will premiere this fall. From the producers of FAMILY GUY, comes THE CLEVELAND SHOW. The new Sunday night animated comedy follows everyone’s favorite soft-spoken FAMILY GUY neighbor, CLEVELAND BROWN (Mike Henry), who moves with his son back to his hometown in Virginia and settles down with his high school sweetheart and her unruly kids. BROTHERS, starring Michael Strahan (“FOX NFL Sunday”) and Daryl “Chill” Mitchell (“Ed,” “Veronica’s Closet”), is a new half-hour comedy about a former big-city NFL hot shot who returns home to his family and his mother’s house to get his life back on track.

On Saturday, Nov. 7 (11:00 PM-Midnight ET/PT), late night will never be the same when Emmy Award winner Wanda Sykes returns to FOX to host THE WANDA SYKES SHOW (working title). The irreverent Saturday late-night series will feature Sykes’ outspoken comedic perspective on current events along with topical, high-energy roundtable discussions.

The new event drama, HUMAN TARGET, premieres with a special preview Sunday, Jan. 17 (8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT) following the NFC Divisional Playoff game. HUMAN TARGET is a full-throttle, action-packed thrill ride from executive producers McG (“Terminator Salvation”) and Simon West (“Con Air,” “Tomb Raider”). Based on the popular DC Comics graphic novel and starring Mark Valley (FRINGE), Chi McBride (“Pushing Daisies”) and Academy Award nominee Jackie Earle Haley (“Watchmen”), the series follows CHRISTOPHER CHANCE (Valley), a unique private contractor who will stop at nothing even if it means becoming a human target to keep his clients alive.

The other drama for midseason is PAST LIFE, a fast-paced emotional thriller inspired by the book “The Reincarnationist.” The series stars Kelli Giddish (“All My Children”) as a gifted psychologist and Nicholas Bishop (“Home and Away”) as a former NYPD detective who work together to explore and unravel mysteries that must be solved in both the past and the present.

One new comedy is scheduled to premiere in midseason. From three-time Emmy Award winner Todd Holland (“Malcolm in the Middle”), the non-traditional family comedy SONS OF TUCSON stars Tyler Labine (“Reaper”) as a charming but wayward schemer hired by three young brothers whose father is in prison.

Summer sensation SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE moves to the fall with its sixth season. Hosted by Cat Deeley and featuring renowned judges Nigel Lythgoe and Mary Murphy, the original dance competition series will continue to inspire and amaze viewers as dancers skilled in styles ranging from hip-hop to ballroom compete to be named America’s Favorite Dancer.

It was also announced that the eighth season of 24 will return to the FOX schedule with a two-night, four-hour premiere as part of a special extended primetime on Sunday, Jan. 17 (9:00-11:00 PM ET/PT), immediately following the premiere of HUMAN TARGET. The next installment of the Emmy Award-winning series starring Kiefer Sutherland will unfold in New York City, amidst the shadows of the Statue of Liberty and the United Nations.

Other FOX series returning in 2009-2010 include: AMERICAN DAD, AMERICAN IDOL, AMERICA’S MOST WANTED, BONES, COPS, DOLLHOUSE, FAMILY GUY, FRINGE, HELL’S KITCHEN, HOUSE, KITCHEN NIGHTMARES, LIE TO ME, THE SIMPSONS and ‘TIL DEATH. Specials returning to the FOX schedule include: THE 41st NAACP IMAGE AWARDS, NEW YEAR’S EVE LIVE and TEEN CHOICE 2009.

Following are the FOX primetime schedule for 2009-2010 and synopses of the new series:

FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE: FALL 2009 (All Times ET/PT)

MONDAY
8:00-9:00 PM HOUSE
9:00-10:00 PM LIE TO ME

TUESDAY
8:00-10:00 PM SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE Performance Show

WEDNESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM SO YOU THINK YOU CAN DANCE Results Show
9:00-10:00 PM GLEE

THURSDAY
8:00-9:00 PM BONES
9:00-10:00 PM FRINGE

FRIDAY
8:00-8:30 PM BROTHERS
8:30-9:00 PM ‘TIL DEATH
9:00-10:00 PM DOLLHOUSE

SATURDAY
8:00-8:30 PM COPS
8:30-9:00 PM COPS
9:00-10:00 PM AMERICA’S MOST WANTED
11:00 PM-Midnight THE WANDA SYKES SHOW (working title)
Midnight-12:30 AM ANIMATION DOMINATION ENCORES

SUNDAY
7:00-8:00 PM THE OT (NFL post-game)
8:00-8:30 PM THE SIMPSONS
8:30-9:00 PM THE CLEVELAND SHOW
9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY
9:30-10:00 PM AMERICAN DAD

FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE: MIDSEASON 2010 (All Times ET/PT)

MONDAY
8:00-9:00 PM HOUSE
9:00-10:00 PM 24

TUESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM AMERICAN IDOL Performance Show
9:00-10:00 PM PAST LIFE

WEDNESDAY
8:00-9:00 PM AMERICAN IDOL Results Show
9:00-10:00 PM HUMAN TARGET (January) / GLEE (spring)

THURSDAY
8:00-9:00 PM BONES
9:00-10:00 PM FRINGE

FRIDAY
8:00-8:30 PM BROTHERS
8:30-9:00 PM ‘TIL DEATH
9:00-10:00 PM DOLLHOUSE

SATURDAY
8:00-8:30 PM COPS
8:30-9:00 PM COPS
9:00-10:00 PM AMERICA’S MOST WANTED
11:00 PM-Midnight THE WANDA SYKES SHOW (working title)
Midnight-12:30 AM ANIMATION DOMINATION ENCORES

SUNDAY
7:00-7:30 PM ANIMATION DOMINATION ENCORES
7:30-8:00 PM AMERICAN DAD
8:00-8:30 PM THE SIMPSONS
8:30-9:00 PM SONS OF TUCSON
9:00-9:30 PM FAMILY GUY
9:30-10:00 PM THE CLEVELAND SHOW

2009-2010 FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE

NEW SERIES SYNOPSES

The following new comedies will premiere this fall on FOX:

GLEE

McKinley High School’s Glee Club used to be at the top of the show choir world, but years later, it has turned into a haven for misfits and social outcasts. But at McKinley, things for the Glee Club are about to change. From Ryan Murphy, the creator of “Nip/Tuck,” comes GLEE, an uplifting comedy musical series with biting humor that features a soundtrack of hit music from past to present. The show follows an optimistic high school teacher as he tries to refuel his own passion for singing while reinventing the school’s glee club and challenging a group of underdogs to realize their star potential. WILL SCHUESTER (Matthew Morrison) has offered to take on the Herculean task of restoring McKinley’s Glee Club to its former glory with the help of fellow teacher and germaphobe EMMA PILLSBURY (Jayma Mays). It’s a tall order when the brightest stars of the club include KURT (Chris Colfer), a nerdy soprano with a flair for the dramatic; MERCEDES (Amber Riley), a dynamic diva-in-training who refuses to sing back-up; ARTIE (Kevin McHale), a geeky guitarist who spends more time avoiding bullies than chasing girls; and TINA (Jenna Ushkowitz), an awkward girl who needs to suppress her stutter before she can take center stage. Will’s only hope lies with two true talents: RACHEL BERRY (Lea Michele), a perfectionist firecracker who is convinced that show choir is her ticket to stardom; and FINN HUDSON (Cory Monteith), the popular high school quarterback with movie star looks and a Motown voice who must protect his reputation with his holier-than-thou girlfriend and head cheerleader, QUINN (Dianna Agron), and his arrogant football teammate, PUCK (Mark Salling). Driven by his secret past, Will is determined to do whatever it takes to make Glee great again, even though everyone around him thinks he’s nuts. He’s out to prove them all wrong from his tough-as-nails wife TERRI SCHUESTER (Jessalyn Gilsig) to McKinley’s scheming cheerleading coach SUE SYLVESTER (Jane Lynch) to an ber-hip world that thinks jazz hands and sequined tuxedos litter the road to infamy rather than pave the way to Hollywood dreams.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: 20th Century Fox Television, Ryan Murphy Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Ryan Murphy, Brad Falchuk, Dante Di Loreto

CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Ian Brennan, John Peter Kousakis

DIRECTOR: Ryan Murphy

CAST: Dianna Agron as Quinn, Chris Colfer as Kurt, Jessalyn Gilsig as Terri Schuester, Jane Lynch as Sue Sylvester, Jayma Mays as Emma Pillsbury, Kevin McHale as Artie, Lea Michele as Rachel Berry, Cory Monteith as Finn Hudson, Matthew Morrison as Will Schuester, Amber Riley as Mercedes, Mark Salling as Puck, Jenna Ushkowitz as Tina

THE CLEVELAND SHOW

THE CLEVELAND SHOW is a new animated series that follows everyone’s favorite soft-spoken neighbor, CLEVELAND BROWN (Mike Henry), to his hometown in Virginia as he settles down with his high school sweetheart, her unruly kids and his own 14-year-old son, CLEVELAND JR. (Kevin Michael Richardson). Many years ago, Cleveland was a high school student madly in love with a beautiful girl named DONNA (Sanaa Lathan). Much to his dismay, his love went unrequited, and Donna wound up marrying another man. Cleveland once told Donna he would always love her, and if this man ever done her wrong, he’d be there when she called. Well, this man done her wrong. Donna’s husband ran off, leaving Donna with a teenage daughter and a young son. Now she’s open to Cleveland and has offered him another chance at love. Unattached after the Loretta-Quagmire debacle and true to his word, Cleveland joyously reunites with Donna, and he and Cleveland Jr. move to Virginia to join their new family. Once in Virginia, there are a few surprises in store for Cleveland, including ROBERTA (Reagan Gomez-Preston), a rebellious new stepdaughter; RALLO (Henry), his new 5-year-old stepson who loves the ladies; and a collection of neighbors that includes a loudmouth redneck, LESTER (Richardson); a hipster wanna-be, HOLT (guest voice Jason Sudeikis); and a religious pair of talking bears, TIM (Seth MacFarlane) and his wife ARIANNA (guest voice Arianna Huffington).

PRODUCTION COMPANY: 20th Century Fox Television

CO-CREATORS/EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Seth MacFarlane, Rich Appel, Mike Henry

VOICE CAST: Mike Henry as Cleveland Brown, Rallo and others; Sanaa Lathan as Donna Tubbs; Reagan Gomez-Preston as Roberta Tubbs; Kevin Michael Richardson as Lester and Cleveland Jr.

GUEST VOICES: Arianna Huffington as Arianna, Jason Sudeikis as Holt

BROTHERS

Starring Michael Strahan (“FOX NFL Sunday”) and Daryl “Chill” Mitchell (“Ed,” “Veronica’s Closet”), BROTHERS is a new half-hour comedy about a former NFL hot shot who learns that even though you can always go home again, the trip back might be tougher than you think. MIKE TRAINOR (Strahan) seemingly has it all he’s a good-looking, wealthy and recently retired NFL player living the high-life in New York City, but he’s about to get sidelined. When Mike gets a phone call from his MOM (CCH Pounder, “The Shield”) who orders him home to Houston, he quickly realizes the more his life has changed, the more his family has stayed the same. His brother CHILL (Daryl “Chill” Mitchell), whose life was altered drastically after a car accident left him in a wheelchair, is struggling to keep his restaurant afloat with the help of his loudmouth associate, ROSCOE (Colton Dunn, “MADtv”). The dynamics between Mike and Chill are the same as when they were kids, and their sibling rivalry hasn’t lessened with age. If they can stop their bickering, put aside their differences and learn to be teammates, the brothers might just turn out to be each other’s biggest asset. Wedged between Mike and Chill are their parents. Their father, whom everyone refers to as COACH (Carl Weathers, “Rocky”), is the local high school football coach and the conservative, opinionated alpha male of his clan. Coach thinks he runs the show, but really it’s Mom who calls the shots. Saucy, stern and a schemer, she is the mastermind of the family. And when she learns that Mike’s business manager took off with all his money, she orchestrates a plan to keep Mike in Houston, save Chill’s restaurant and bring the family back together under one roof again all without anyone realizing what she’s up to. Mom’s plan helps Mike realize that his family however dysfunctional they may be is the only family he’s got. And although he may not have a penny to his name, as long as he’s surrounded by people who love him, he’ll always be a rich man.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: Sony Pictures Television; Tantamount Studios; Impact Zone Productions, Inc.

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Eric Tannenbaum, Kim Tannenbaum, Mitch Hurwitz, Don Reo

DIRECTOR: Ted Wass

CAST: Michael Strahan as Mike, Daryl “Chill” Mitchell as Chill, CCH Pounder as Mom, Carl Weathers as Coach, Colton Dunn as Roscoe

The following new late-night series will premiere this fall:

THE WANDA SYKES SHOW (working title)

Emmy Award-winning actress, comedian and author Wanda Sykes returns to FOX to host the innovative and irreverent new Saturday late-night series, THE WANDA SYKES SHOW (working title). The high-energy one-hour show will feature biting commentary on topical issues and heated panel discussions with recurring personalities. The series’ unique format will highlight Sykes’ outspoken comedic perspective on current events and will also allow her to leave the studio to shoot segments in the field.

PRODUCTION COMPANY: Fox Television Studios

HOST: Wanda Sykes

The following new dramas are slated for a midseason launch:

HUMAN TARGET

It takes a brave, selfless man to make himself a “human target” in order to save the lives of those in danger. Based on the popular DC Comics graphic novel, HUMAN TARGET is a full-throttle action drama centered on CHRISTOPHER CHANCE (Mark Valley, FRINGE), a unique private contractor/security guard hired to protect. Call him what you like, because for Chance, it’s about one thing only: saving his clients’ lives. When there is an unusual or imminent threat that can’t be solved through “normal” means of protection, Chance is hired to completely integrate himself into his clients’ lives to become the human target. If you’re a corporate manager whose disgruntled employee has gone violently off the deep end, Chance is your new auditor. If you’re the president of a bank who’s been tipped off to a potential heist, Chance is your unassuming bank teller. During each job, Chance, assisted by his business partner WINSTON (Chi McBride, “Pushing Daisies”) and hired gun GUERRERO (Jackie Earle Haley, “Watchmen”), puts himself directly in the line of fire as he races against time to save his client, while unraveling the truth behind the mission. With every new danger, Chance’s dark history will also unravel. Does anyone know who Christopher Chance really is, or what secrets lay buried in his past? What would make a man willingly become a HUMAN TARGET?

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: Bonanza Productions Inc., Wonderland Sound and Vision, DC Comics, Warner Bros. Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Jon Steinberg, McG, Simon West, Brad Kern

CO-EXECUTIVE PRODUCER: Peter Johnson

DIRECTOR: Simon West

WRITER: Jon Steinberg CAST: Mark Valley as Christopher Chance, Jackie Earle Haley as Guerrero, Chi McBride as Winston

PAST LIFE

Have you ever experienced dj vu or met someone you thought seemed familiar? Do you believe in karma, fate or love at first sight? From writer David Hudgins (“Friday Night Lights”), and inspired by the book “The Reincarnationist” by M.J. Rose, comes PAST LIFE, a new drama series about an unlikely pair of past-life detectives who investigate whether what is happening to you today is the result of who you were before. DR. KATE MCGINN (Kelli Giddish, “All My Children”) is not your typical psychologist. Confident, outspoken and highly educated, she works at The Talmadge Center for Behavioral Health in New York City, a world-renowned institute dedicated to the study of the science of the soul. After experiencing a past-life regression in her 20s, Kate became a believer in reincarnation. Using regression therapy and her natural gift for reading people, Kate helps solve the mysteries of her troubled clients who suffer from present-day problems caused by past-life traumas. She believes there are levels of consciousness and explanations for human behavior that science can’t begin to explain. Accustomed to skeptics, but not bothered by them, Kate is an unapologetic believer and a force of nature who marches to the beat of her own drummer. Her partner, PRICE WHATLEY (Nicholas Bishop, “Home and Away”), is a different story. A former NYPD homicide detective, pragmatic and cynical, Price is a damaged soul who constantly battles grief and guilt over the accidental death of his wife. Price feels that Kate, though not certifiable, certainly operates on the fringes of science. It’s a volatile relationship, but with Price’s solid detective skills, and Kate’s penchant for out-of-the-box thinking, together they make a formidable, if somewhat dysfunctional, team. A fast-paced emotional thrill ride, each episode finds Price and Kate working with their colleagues to unravel a new mystery involving the past-lives of their clients. DR. MALACHI TALMADGE (Richard Schiff, “The West Wing”) is Kate’s mentor and the center’s namesake, an avuncular but gruff elder statesman who is a legend in the field of cognitive research. DR. RISHI KARNA (Ravi Patel, “Scrubs”) is the rookie of the group, a baby-faced therapist from Calcutta who loves bad American TV, Cuban jazz and driving everyone crazy.

PRODUCTION COMPANIES: Bonanza Productions Inc., Warner Bros. Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: David Hudgins, Lou Pitt

DIRECTOR: Deran Sarafian

WRITER: David Hudgins

CAST: Kelli Giddish as Dr. Kate McGinn, Nicholas Bishop as Price Whatley, Richard Schiff as Dr. Malachi Talmadge, Ravi Patel as Dr. Rishi Karna

The following new comedy is slated for a midseason launch:

SONS OF TUCSON

In the tradition of “Malcolm in the Middle” and “The Bernie Mac Show,” SONS OF TUCSON is a family comedy about three brothers who hire a charming, wayward schemer to stand in as their father when their real one goes to prison. What begins as a business relationship evolves into something more complex and compelling: a family unlike any we’ve ever seen. The three brothers find their dad-for-hire, RON SNUFFKIN (Tyler Labine, “Reaper”), at the local sporting good store. Ron will be forced to draw on a wide array of skills and a vast bag of tricks as he steps into the patriarch role to take care of the boys of the Gunderson family. ROBBY GUNDERSON (Davis Cleveland, “How I Met Your Mother”), 8, is a loose cannon who doesn’t respond well to authority; GARY GUNDERSON (Frank Dolce, “Doubt”), 11, is a bright and street-savvy leader who is every bit the con man his father is; and BRANDON GUNDERSON (Troy Gentile, “Entourage”), 13, is a gentle free spirit who simply goes along for the ride. MAGGIE MORALES (Natalie Martinez, “Saints & Sinners”), Robby’s second-grade teacher and the object of Ron’s affection, might just be the only stable figure in the lives of this quirky quartet. While SONS OF TUCSON is grounded in the day-to-day challenges of a single-parent home, nothing in the Gunderson household is quite what it seems. An ongoing chess match between Ron and the boys will keep both parties on their toes, as neither side can afford to give up too much power or independence.

PRODUCTION COMPANY: 20th Century Fox Television

EXECUTIVE PRODUCERS: Justin Berfield, Jason Felts, Harvey Myman, Todd Holland

DIRECTOR: Todd Holland

WRITERS: Tommy Dewey, Greg Bratman

CAST: Tyler Labine as Ron Snuffkin, Davis Cleveland as Robby Gunderson, Frank Dolce as Gary Gunderson, Troy Gentile as Brandon Gunderson, Natalie Martinez as Maggie Morales

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