21st Century Fox Inc. is adding a trio of multicamera comedies to its lineup this fall, while holding its pair of drama entries for midseason debuts.
Ahead of its May 14 upfront presentation in New York, Fox announced that "Rel" — a multicamera series about a single father inspired by the life of its star, comedian and actor Lil Rel Howery — will cap the network's Sunday night block.
Also during the 2018-2019 season, Sunday night will see "The Simpsons" and "Family Guy" celebrate their 30th and 20th anniversaries, respectively, and "Bob's Burgers" will reach its 150th episode.
After a one-year hiatus, "Last Man Standing," starring Tim Allen, will return to broadcast television at 8 p.m. on Fridays. From 20th Century Television, the show's sixth season on ABC (US) averaged 8.3 million in live + 7 ratings to stand as the second-most-watched comedy on the Walt Disney Co.-owned network, behind "Modern Family."
"Last Man Standing" will be followed on FOX at 8:30 p.m. by "The Cool Kids," tracking the lives of rule-breaking friends — played by veterans David Alan Grier ("The Carmichael Show," "In Living Color"), Martin Mull ("Veep," "Roseanne"), Leslie Jordan ("Will and Grace," "American Horror Story") and Vicki Lawrence ("Mama's Family," "The Carol Burnett Show") — living in a retirement community.
FOX will debut new dramas "The Passage" and "Proven Innocent" during midseason. Based on author Justin Cronin's best-selling trilogy, "The Passage" focuses on Project Noah, a secret medical facility where scientists are experimenting with a dangerous virus. "Proven Innocent" comes from Emmy- and Golden Globe-winner and "Empire" co-creator Danny Strong and David Elliott ("The Four Brothers") and follows an underdog criminal defense firm led by a woman fighting her own wrongful murder conviction in a sensational case that made her a household name.
Midseason also will see the fifth and farewell campaign of "Gotham" as the young Bruce Wayne is finally ready to assume his Batman identity. The sophomore season of Seth McFarlane's space adventure dramedy ode to "Star Trek," "The Orville," will take off on Thursdays in 2019.
On the event side, Fox will air a live musical production of the Tony Award- and Pulitzer Prize-winning "Rent" on Jan. 27, 2019. Come spring, a new edition of "Cosmos" will bow as a global event on both the broadcast network and National Geographic Channels in 180 countries and 43 languages. "Cosmos: Possible Worlds" will reveal previously uncharted realms, including lost worlds and worlds to come, and those that we may one day inhabit in a thrilling future we can still have.
As to the rest of the fall schedule, returning dramas "The Gifted" and "Lethal Weapon" will team on Tuesdays, while Wednesdays will once again be Lee Daniels' night, with music dramas "Empire" and "Star."
FOX also recently secured the rights to "Thursday Night Football." Its "TNF" scheduled kicks off Sept. 27 and will continue for an 11-week run, sans Thanksgiving. On Saturday nights, the network will turn its attention to the collegiate gridiron.