Saturday, January 20, 2018
TV and Media

CBS unveils fall schedule with six new shows

NEW YORK — Wrapping up a season in which it will finish first in both viewers and the crucial adults 18-49 demographic that advertisers favor, CBS unveiled a fall TV schedule Wednesday with four new comedies and two dramas.

Though CBS announced the fewest new shows of any major broadcast network, it still managed to shake up its lineup by moving established programs around and benching one of its successful sitcoms until midseason.

Among the new shows are sitcoms starring Robin Williams, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Will Arnett of Arrested Development, and dramas featuring Dylan McDermott and former CSI star Marg Helgenberger.

For CBS, the win in adults 18-49 was its first since the 1991-92 season. The first-place finish in viewers and demographics will give the network more ammunition when it negotiates with advertisers for the upcoming season.

"The network is alive and healthy," said chief executive Leslie Moonves, who added that CBS has never been more profitable and that the company's stock recently hit an all-time high.

CBS canceled two dramas — CSI: NY and Vegas — that averaged more than 10 million viewers each, which is usually considered successful in today's fragmented television universe. Another high-profile drama, Hawaii Five-0, moves from Monday to Friday, which is a demotion because that night generally has fewer younger viewers tuning in.

Another surprise move is the decision to keep Mike and Molly, the sitcom starring Billy Gardell and Melissa McCarthy, off the fall schedule, although it has ordered 22 episodes in anticipation of a new sitcom faltering.

CBS is moving its popular drama Person of Interest from Thursday to Tuesday, where it will follow NCIS and NCIS: Los Angeles. That will give CBS a powerhouse lineup of the three most-watched shows on television in a row. The Person of Interest move also opens space Thursdays for two new sitcoms to join The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men.

One of CBS' more interesting moves is the scheduling of two series for its 10 p.m. Monday slot, another sign that the networks want fewer reruns on their schedules. When the season starts, Hostages, a drama from producer Jerry Bruckheimer starring McDermott and Toni Collette, will run for 15 episodes. After Hostages is done with its run, Intelligence, about a government agent with a Google-like brain, will run for 13 episodes. It stars Helgenberger and Lost's Josh Holloway.

The new comedies from CBS on Monday are We Are Men, about four guys who live in the same apartment complex, and Mom starring Allison Janney and Anna Faris, about a mother and daughter.

The Thursday sitcoms are The Millers, starring Arnett and Beau Bridges about a father and son who divorce at the same time, and The Crazy Ones, starring Williams as an advertising executive and Gellar as his daughter.

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