Patricia Heaton and Kelsey Grammer in Back to You by Joe Viles/FoxThe new dramas premiering this fall are K-Ville, starring Anthony Anderson and Cole Hauser as police officers in post-Katrina New Orleans; and New Amsterdam, the first American television project from Oscar-nominated director/producer Lasse Hallström, featuring newcomer Nikolaj Coster Waldau as a New York City homicide detective unlike any other.
The new comedy slated for fall is Back to You, from executive producers Steven Levitan and Christopher Lloyd. Set at a TV news station in Pittsburgh, it stars Emmy Award winners Patricia Heaton and Kelsey Grammer and is directed by James Burrows.
The new unscripted series that will premiere this fall on Fox include, from the producers of American Idol, The Search for the Next Great American Band(working title), which will do for undiscovered groups what Idol has done for singers. Also with a musical theme, Nashville (working title), from the producers of Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County, is an unscripted docu-soap chronicling a group of ambitious young people trying to make their mark on the music industry and Nashville society. And in Kitchen Nightmares, mercurial master chef Gordon Ramsay of Hell's Kitchen fame attempts to turn around floundering restaurants in less than a week.
Two additional dramas and two additional comedies will launch in midseason. Courtroom drama Canterbury's Law, from executive producers Denis Leary and Jim Serpico, writer Dave Erickson, and director Mike Figgis, stars Julianna Margulies as a rebellious female defense attorney who’s willing to bend the law in order to protect the wrongfully accused. And The Sarah Connor Chronicles is an intense new drama based on the celebrated heroine of the Terminator movies, with Lena Headey in the title role. The Return of Jezebel James (working title) is a sister comedy starring Parker Posey and Lauren Ambrose, from Gilmore Girls creator Amy Sherman-Palladino. And a spring launch is planned for The Rules for Starting Over (working title), starring Craig Bierko and Rashida Jones in the Farrelly Brothers’ comedic take on a group of 30-somethings trying to find true love the second time around.
Fox series returning in 2007-2008 include: 24, American Dad, American Idol, America's Most Wanted: America Fights Back, Are You Smarter Than a 5th Grader, Bones, Cops, Family Guy, House, King of the Hill, MADtv, Prison Break, The Simpsons, Talkshow with Spike Feresten and 'Til Death.
The summer 2007 schedule features established summer hits So You Think You Can Dance and Hell's Kitchen, along with new series On the Lot, the moviemaking competition from Mark Burnett and Steven Spielberg, and Anchorwoman, an unscripted reality comedy series about a big-city model who goes to work at a small-town news station and tries to succeed as an anchorwoman to help the station’s ratings.
Following are the FOX primetime schedule for 2007-2008 and synopses of the new series:
FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE: FALL 2007
(All Times ET/PT)
8:00 pm PRISON BREAK
9:00 pm K-VILLE
8:00 NEW AMSTERDAM
8:00 BACK TO YOU
8:30 ’TIL DEATH
8:00 ARE YOU SMARTER THAN A 5th GRADER?
9:00 KITCHEN NIGHTMARES
8:00 THE SEARCH FOR THE NEXT GREAT AMERICAN
BAND (working title)
9:00 NASHVILLE (working title)
2007-2008 FOX PRIMETIME SCHEDULE
NEW SERIES SYNOPSES
The following new dramas will premiere this fall on FOX:
K-VILLE (Mondays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): From writer and executive producer Jonathan Lisco (NYPD Blue, The District) comes a heroic police drama set in New Orleans. Two years after Katrina, the city is still in chaos. Many cops have quit, and the jails, police stations and crime labs still haven’t been properly rebuilt. But the cops who remain have courage to burn and a passion to reclaim and rebuild their city. Marlin Boulet (Anthony Anderson, The Departed, The Shield) is a brash, funny, in-your-face veteran of the NOPD’s Felony Action Squad, the specialized unit that targets the most-wanted criminals. Even when his partner deserted him during the storm, Boulet held his post, spending days in the water saving lives and keeping order. Now he’s unapologetic about bending the rules when it comes to collaring bad guys. Boulet’s new partner, Trevor Cobb (Cole Hauser, The Break-Up, ER), was a soldier in Afghanistan before joining the NOPD. He’s tough and committed, but if he’s less than comfortable with Boulet’s methods, it’s because he’s harboring a dark secret. Cobb has come to New Orleans seeking redemption, but redemption can be dangerous. Will Boulet be able to trust him? Will Cobb’s past endanger them both? Rounding out the crew of cops are hotheaded Billy "K-9" Faust (Maximiliano Hernández, Law & Order, Shark), who often speaks before thinking; wisecracking Jeff GLUE BOY GOODEN (Blake Shields, Sleeper Cell, Veronica Mars), the team’s comic relief; tough-as-nails Ginger "Love Tap" LeBeau (Tawny Cypress, Heroes), the only female on the squad, who gives as good as she gets; and Captain James Embry (John Carroll Lynch, Zodiac, The Drew Carey Show), who wrangles the eclectic personalities of his squad with equal parts humor and tenacity.
NEW AMSTERDAM (Wednesdays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): Directed and executive-produced by visionary Lasse Hallström (My Life As a Dog, The Cider House Rules, Chocolat, The Hoax) and written by Allan Loeb (Things We Lost in the Fire, 21) and Christian Taylor (Showboy, Six Feet Under), NEW AMSTERDAM is the story of a New York homicide detective unlike any other. He is brilliant, mysterious, reckless, magnetic, unknowable. And he has a profound secret — he is immortal. In 1642, John Amsterdam (Nikolaj Coster Waldau, Kingdom of Heaven), then a Dutch solider in the colony of New Amsterdam — later to become New York City — stepped in front of a sword to save the life of a Native Indian girl during a massacre of her indigenous tribe. The girl in turn rescued Amsterdam, weaving an ancient spell that conferred immortality upon him. Amsterdam will not age, she told him, until he finds his one true love. Only then will he become whole and ready for mortality. But Amsterdam has found this to be a mixed blessing. Over the course of three centuries, he’s experienced endless adventure and honed his many talents. But everyone Amsterdam meets must leave him in time; lovers and children die while he remains young. His sole confidant and current lifelong friend is the sage jazz club owner Omar (Stephen Henderson, Law & Order: SVU), the keeper of Amsterdam’s secret, as well as a few of his own.
As the exhilaration of eternal life has given way to emotional isolation and bitter loneliness, Amsterdam discovers the blessing has become a curse. Bringing to bear the unorthodox techniques and unique knowledge gained from his vast life experience, Amsterdam today is one of the NYPD’s best homicide detectives, sparring with his vibrant, strong-willed partner Eva Marquez (Zuleikha Robinson, Rome, The Lone Gunmen) as they solve difficult murder cases. But when Amsterdam suffers and then recovers from what appears to be a massive heart attack while chasing a suspect, and Dr. Sara Dillane (Alexie Gilmore, Find Love) pronounces him dead in the ER, he realizes that the Indian girl’s prophesy may have come true – he felt the pain in his heart that she had foretold so long ago. His soul mate must have been nearby. As he works to find a killer on the streets of New York, Amsterdam understands that his own life – and possibly his death – have changed forever.
The new comedy premiering this fall on FOX is:
BACK TO YOU (Tuesdays, 8:00-8:30 PM ET/PT): In the ‘90s, the local TV news scene in Pittsburgh was dominated by one team: Chuck Darling (Kelsey Grammer, Frasier, Cheers) and Kelly Carr (Patricia Heaton, Everybody Loves Raymond). They had that elusive quality all news teams need: chemistry ... at least on-screen. Off-screen, Chuck was a bit of a self-centered womanizer, Kelly a bit of an uptight know-it-all. So when Chuck got the call to move up to a larger market, no tears were shed. But after an embarrassing on-air tirade ended up on the Internet, Chuck found himself on the downswing career-wise. He even questioned whether his lifestyle of chasing women and living in hotels was as exciting as it used to be. So when he got the call to return to Pittsburgh, to reunite with Kelly and try to take the newscast back to No. 1, it was an offer he couldn’t refuse. Back in Pittsburgh, Chuck has a new coworker in Ryan Church (Josh Gad, Mary and Joe), the overstressed news director. There are also familiar faces like Marsh McGinley (Fred Willard, Anchorman: The Legend of Ron Burgundy, Best in Show), the affable, endlessly inappropriate sports anchor, and Gary Crezyzewski, pronounced Kre-shoov-ski (Ty Burrell, In Good Company, Out of Practice), the perennially put-upon field reporter who always seems to get left out in the snow. But, mostly, there’s Kelly, now a single mom to 10-year-old Gracie (Laura Marano, Without a Trace). There was magic between them once. Can they find it again?
New unscripted series joining the FOX schedule this fall include:
KITCHEN NIGHTMARES (Thursdays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): Hell hath no fury like an angry chef, and no chef has a sharper temper than Gordon Ramsay when things go wrong in the kitchen. The star of the highly rated culinary boot camp “Hell’s Kitchen” returns to FOX with another sizzling unscripted series. This time, Chef Ramsay hits the road in each episode, tackling a restaurant in crisis and exposing the stressful realities of trying to run a successful food business. Inspired by one of the UK’s biggest hits, KITCHEN NIGHTMARES is seen in more than 50 territories around the globe, and the series reveals a whole new side to Ramsay. He’s still prone to the explosive outbursts and spectacular confrontations familiar to fans of “Hell’s Kitchen,” but he also shows his sensitive and nurturing side – a unique blend of fury, passion, inspirational leadership and tough love that can coax a small spark of talent into a roaring flame. There’s no time for polite small talk as Ramsay embarks on his mission to turn things around. If the wine waiter’s service isn’t up to par, he’ll be out the door before he can say “merlot.” If the head chef doesn’t match up to Ramsay’s expectations, Ramsay will hammer him into shape, and if he can’t stand the heat, he may quit the kitchen. Ramsay’s reputation is on the line, so there’s bound to be high blood pressure, raised voices and serious clashes as he attempts to do the impossible: turn a deserted dining room into the most sought-after venue in town in just a week.
THE SEARCH FOR THE NEXT GREAT AMERICAN BAND (working title) (Fridays, 8:00-9:00 PM ET/PT): What “American Idol” did for individuals, THE SEARCH FOR THE NEXT GREAT AMERICAN BAND is going to do for musical groups. The producers of “American Idol” will conduct the ultimate search for an undiscovered band. THE SEARCH FOR THE NEXT GREAT AMERICAN BAND is scouring the country, seeking groups from all musical genres who think they have what it takes to make it big. Judges will narrow down bands from all walks of life – musicians of different ages, family acts, garage bands, etc. – to 10 semi-finalists, who will perform in front of a live studio audience. Viewers then will have the opportunity to vote for their favorite bands. The final three acts will compete for a major recording contract and the chance to become music superstars.
NASHVILLE (working title) (Fridays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): From the creative minds behind the hit series “Laguna Beach: The Real Orange County” comes NASHVILLE, a high-stakes, high-drama docu-soap set in "the biggest small town in America.” The show focuses on the dreamers and dream-makers in the music industry, as well as those trying to make their mark on Nashville’s big business and high society. The series features a diverse, vibrant young cast perched on the cusp of achieving their greatest successes in a town that can make you or break you. Talent, power, drive, love and hope are the fuel that makes Nashville burn bright – and makes this unique place the true embodiment of the American Dream. Behind every song there’s a story waiting to be told, and there are many such stories in NASHVILLE.
The following new dramas are slated for January launches:
CANTERBURY’S LAW (Thursdays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): From executive producers Denis Leary and Jim Serpico (Rescue Me, The Job) and writer Dave Erickson (Murder in Greenwich) comes CANTERBURY’S LAW, a courtroom drama about a rebellious female defense attorney who’s willing to bend the law in order to protect the wrongfully accused. Elizabeth Canterbury (Julianna Margulies, ER) is a force of nature. An attorney on the rise, she puts her career on the line to take on risky and unpopular cases, even when they take a toll on her personal life. Elizabeth and her law professor husband Matthew Canterbury (Linus Roache, Batman Begins, The Chronicles of Riddick), haunted by the disappearance of their young son, have settled in Providence, Rhode Island, in an attempt to distance themselves from the tragedy and put their relationship back together. But those goals become elusive whenever Elizabeth’s work provides a stark reminder of the justice absent in their own lives. At the office, Canterbury has surrounded herself with a brilliant but motley crew of attorneys. Russell Cross (Ben Shenkman, Pi, Angels in America) was forced out of the Providence District Attorney’s Office when he went toe-to-toe with his morally bankrupt boss, D.A. Zach Williams. His reputation tarnished, Russell turned to Canterbury, the only attorney willing to take him in. Now Russell provides a much-needed voice of reason for Canterbury even when she doesn’t want to hear it, his position of influence well-earned by their years of friendship. Chester Fields (Jocko Sims, Dreamgirls, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation) and Molly McConnell (Trieste Dunn, United 93) are the associates rounding out Canterbury’s legal crew. Chester is a blue-blooded congressman’s son who is embarrassed by his privileged upbringing and has turned his back on politics. Molly, in contrast, is headstrong, passionate and quick to take sides – even if she finds herself in the opposite corner from Canterbury.
THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES (Sundays, 9:00-10:00 PM ET/PT): Executive producers Josh Friedman (War of the Worlds), David Nutter (Supernatural, Smallville) and C-2 Pictures (Terminator 3: Rise of the Machines) bring to television an intense new drama based on the celebrated heroine of the Terminator movies: Sarah Connor. At the end of Terminator 2: Judgment Day, Sarah vanquished the liquid metal Terminator sent from the future to kill her teenage son, John. Sarah and John now find themselves alone in a very dangerous, complicated world. Fugitives from the law, they are confronted with the reality that still more enemies from the future, and the present, could attack at any moment. THE SARAH CONNOR CHRONICLES reveals what happens when Sarah (Lena Headey, The Brothers Grimm, 300) stops running and goes on the offensive against an ever-evolving technological enemy bent on destroying her life, and perhaps the world. Her son, 15-year-old John Connor (Thomas Dekker, Heroes), knows that he may be the future savior of mankind, but is not yet ready to take on the mantle of leadership that he’s told is his destiny. John finds himself inextricably drawn to Cameron (Summer Glau, Serenity, The Unit), an enigmatic and otherworldly student at his high school, who soon proves to be much more than his confidante – she assumes the role of Sarah and John’s fearless protector. On their trail are not only threats from the future, but an intelligent and tough FBI agent, James Ellison (Richard T. Jones, Judging Amy), who soon becomes a powerful ally.
The new comedy scheduled to premiere in January is:
THE RETURN OF JEZEBEL JAMES (working title) (Wednesdays, 8:30-9:00 PM ET/PT): Can two estranged sisters, polar opposites, live together when one agrees to carry the other’s baby? Sarah Tohomkins (Parker Posey, For Your Consideration, Best in Show) is a bright, optimistic, determined woman who seems to have it all – a great job as a children’s book editor, an eager-to-please assistant, Buddy (Michael Arden), who helps keep her life together, and a no-strings-attached personal relationship with successful businessman Marcus Sonti (Scott Cohen, Kissing Jessica Stein). Nevertheless, as her father, Ronald (Ron McLarty, Law & Order), is constantly pointing out, something is missing from Sarah’s life. Her hard work may garner accolades, but when she goes home at night, she is very much alone. All too aware that she isn’t getting any younger, Sarah decides to have a baby on her own and gets the shock of her life when the doctor tells her she can’t get pregnant. Having no concept of the term can’t, Sarah wills herself to execute a plan. With nowhere else to turn, Sarah sets up a meeting with her quirky younger sister, Coco (Lauren Ambrose, Six Feet Under), and proposes a plan for Coco to carry her baby. They haven’t seen each other in a while, and Coco refuses to go along with such a huge favor. But something happens when Sarah mentions that she’s turned Coco’s imaginary childhood friend, Jezebel James, into a children’s book. Even though she doesn’t say so out loud, Coco is clearly touched, and, realizing that her current living situation – sharing a couch with her friend’s sick dog – isn’t working out, Coco decides that this just might be worth a try.
The comedy slated for a spring debut is:
THE RULES FOR STARTING OVER (working title) (Date and Time TBA): From the creatively fruitful minds of the Farrelly Brothers comes a single camera comedy, set in Boston, about a group of newly single friends learning the painful lessons of starting over in their 30s. They’d all love to get remarried, if they could just find their true loves. Jack "Gator" Gately (Craig Bierko, Cinderella Man, Boston Legal) is a charismatic, optimistic leader who never expected to be single again. But now that he is, he’s determined to make the best of it. He’s going to sift through all the bruised, damaged, occasionally psychotic fruit until he finds the one. Joining Gator in bachelorhood redux is his thrice-divorced best friend Tommy (Johnny Sneed, The Guardian, Fever Pitch). The founder and brewmaster of an upstart microbrewery, Tommy has a voracious appetite for food, beer and women. He falls in love easily and always disastrously, yet truly hopes his fourth starter marriage will be the one. Dr. Freddy Sahgal (Shaun Majumder, 24, Harold & Kumar Go to White Castle) has seen some pretty strange stuff during his years as a successful surgeon, but he’s never seen any of it through the eyes of a single man. Probably the least equipped of the group to handle this unexpected life change is Dr. Freddy, who can execute a triple bypass in his sleep, but is all thumbs when it comes to the opposite sex. Rounding out the group is Kate (Rashida Jones, The Office), a smart, successful attorney who handled all three of the boys’ divorces. Having just turned 30, Kate finds herself dumped after a seven-year engagement. She reluctantly joins the guys in negotiating the treacherous waters of dating. Kate owns the brownstone next to Gator’s. Over time, this pair may find that the one is just a brick wall away.
The new unscripted series scheduled to premiere this summer is:
ANCHORWOMAN (Date and Time TBA): Phil Hurley is the owner of a tiny Texas news station, KYTX Channel 19, and he is desperate to turn the tide of his mediocre ratings, or even just compete with a rival channel. Phil has shocked the station and town of Tyler, Texas, by bringing in a gorgeous model and ex-WWE diva with no previous news experience to be his next ANCHORWOMAN – all in hopes of reinventing the look of Channel 19 and overhauling its below-average 6 share to a number more like his competitor’s dominating 36. Former Miss New York and über-vixen Lauren Jones packs up her Versace dresses and heads to the middle of nowhere to start a new career. Can this bombshell cut it as a serious reporter? Will she save KYTX, or make it the laughingstock of the Lone Star State? Lauren wants to show everyone she’s no airhead, and this is her big chance to prove she’s more than just a pretty face. The entire newsroom thinks the boss has made a giant mistake. Reigning anchor Annalisa Petragliais not about to lose her Queen Bee status to some L.A. hottie. News Director Dan Delgado is fit to be tied as his beloved journalistic standards go out the window. Michelle Reese, a hard-nosed reporter bound for CNN, will take no prisoners. Lauren will struggle not only with the news team and an unfamiliar town, but also with the not-so-Hollywood news stories – covering bake sales, cowpie-tossing contests and county fairs like they were Watergate. News anchor or dead weight? Only the ratings will tell, so stay tuned for the next ANCHORWOMAN: Lauren Jones.