[05/24/05 - 12:00 AM] Post-Upfront Frequently Asked Questions By The Futon Critic Staff (TFC)
LOS ANGELES (thefutoncritic.com) -- With the tension of the broadcast upfronts finally over, our readers might have a few nagging questions. We thought we'd use this space to answer the most frequently asked:
1. When will the broadcast networks announce their fall premiere dates?
Generally speaking most of the broadcast networks will set their fall premieres by the time the TCA's summer press tour rolls around in mid-July. Last year, ABC was the first to detail its launch strategy on June 10 (read the story), followed by NBC on July 10 (read the story), The WB on July 14 (read the story), FOX on July 15 (read the story) CBS on July 19 (read the story) and UPN on July 20 (read the story). Also keep in mind, premiere dates often get revised after their initial announcements.
2. What are the chances any of the pilots that were passed over get picked up at a later date?
Very slim, especially for scripted projects. Last season only five scripted pilots that weren't announced at their respective network's upfront presentations - ABC's "Jake in Progress," CBS' "Numb3rs," FOX's "Point Pleasant," UPN's "The Bad Girl's Guide" and "Cuts" - eventually went on to make it to the airwaves. In terms of when they were picked up, "Jake" and "Guide" got the nod in June, "Numb3rs" in July (after shooting a second pilot with a different cast), "Point" in September and "Cuts" all the way in November. (ABC also eventually gave the Jennifer Love Hewitt comedy "In the Game" a midseason order but went on to scrap the project entirely.)
3. Anything else I should know?
That what the networks announce in May rarely matches up with what eventually becomes their schedule. All six broadcast networks made shifts of varying degrees from what they rolled out at the upfronts. ABC for example originally placed "Grey's Anatomy" on Monday nights beginning in January (read the story), CBS had "The Amazing Race" as its tentpole on Saturdays (read the story) and the WB had "The Mountain" on Thursdays with "Blue Collar TV" following "Smallville" on Wednesdays (read the story). Other announcements that went on to be scrubbed include NBC having "The Contender" air on Tuesdays at 8:00/7:00c beginning that fall (read the story), UPN putting "Enterprise" at 9:00/8:00c instead of 8:00/7:00c on Fridays (read the story) and FOX (amongst other things) having "Tru Calling" following "The O.C." in November (read the story).