News Briefs: FX Might Split Itself in Two

By Tim Surette

Jan 18, 2013

TWICE AS GOOD OR HALF AS GOOD NEWS

... Does two times the FX mean twice as much edgy, artistic television, or does it mean sucky suckyville? Fox is reportedly considering transforming its Fox Soccer channel into a second FX, with the idea that one will be a home to comedy and the other will house dramas. Will that mean diluted programming or double the good stuff? Or will FX break our hearts and just be all reality television in two years like everyone else? [Broadcasting & Cable]


PICKUPS AND PUSHBACKS

... TNT has ordered a pilot for Leverage creator Dean Devlin's new series starring Geena Davis. The nameless series would star Davis as a bounty hunter who is successful because she's just a tad crazy. The idea is based on real-life bounty hunter Mackenzie Green. [Deadline Hollywood]

... TNT has also ordered the reality series Marshal Law: Texas from producer Jerry BOOM Bruckheimer. Look for six episodes' worth of cameras following Texan badasses capturing the bad guys later this year. [Deadline Hollywood]

... ABC has bumped the premiere of Body of Proof, and yes, this time it IS Obama's fault, Jethro. Because Mr. President is giving his State of the Union on February 12, which would be Week 2 of the Dana Delaney drama, ABC is pushing the season premiere back to February 19 so as not to have it interrupted by the most powerful man in the galaxy so soon. [Deadline Hollywood]


CASTING NEWS

... Breaking Bad's Betsy Brandt (Marie) has landed a sweet gig as the wife of Michael J. Fox's character in his new NBC sitcom. The untitled show has already received a 22-episode order and is loosely based on Fox's real life. Brandt is a totally kickass actress, guys. [Deadline Hollywood]

... "Heather Locklear has joined the cast of Franklin & Bash" is the least surprising sentence I will write all year. [EW]

... Rosemarie DeWitt won't be starring on HBO's The Newsroom due to messed-up schedules. Sure, DeWitt, blame schedules. We all know you just wanted out of that farce. [Deadline Hollywood]

... The wonderful and super and talented (all truths) Toni Collette will star in the CBS pilot Hostages. She'll play a D.C.-based surgeon who is ordered to operate on the president but then has her family taken hostage and oh man this sounds like a crummy situation for her! [EW]



Follow TV.com writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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  • WavSlave Feb 12, 2013

    Nope, bad idea. There just isn't enough new programming on FX to justify splitting it into two separate entities. The two genres they currently show work well together anyway.

    And if they use the newly created vacancies in FX's (FX1?) schedule, I fear they'll either churn out more stain-on-its-otherwise-stellar-reputation shows like the unwatchable Anger Management or ... reality programming (shudder), the last refuge of the programming scoundrel.

  • rxym Jan 21, 2013

    Great. Now there will be two awesome channels with great shows I can't watch on Bell TV up here in Canada.

  • mrjimmyjames Jan 20, 2013

    Not sure if the idea of MJ Fox having a permanent wife/love interest on his new show works. Sure it's realistic but i've never seen an example of it working before. Spin City tried and immediately got rid of Carla Gugino's character and Family Ties never had anyone stick around for too long as Alex P. Keaton's girlfriend. Maybe he just always seems like he needs to be single on his sitcoms? A wife and kids will definetely create a new dynamic for Michael J. Fox.

  • mrjimmyjames Jan 20, 2013

    If they move all comedies to this new channel, I think that's a horrible idea. It's not as if everyone already has Fox Soccer. Way to strand Archer and It's Always Sunny on an unseen channel, News Corp.! Also keep in mind: It's not as if the "very funny" rebranding of TBS has been that successful. What notable original show do they have other than Conan? Tyler Perry? ugh

  • ElgaNelly Jan 19, 2013

    Yeah, Hostages for me!

  • DrSpongejr Jan 19, 2013

    FX dividing itself sounds like a terrible idea, obviously trying to be like TBS/TNT. However, the difference between those networks is that the comedies and dramas blend too well together to separate themselves from each other. The comedies are generally bizarre, somewhat dark and mature, something TBS comedies aren't, and the dramas are just too gritty and dark to have an entire channel dedicated to them, while TNT has "Franklin and Bash" and other lighter dramas to lighten the mood. As it is now, there is "yin and yang" in the station, not being too encompased by either dark dramas or bizarre comedies, and there is also a good variety of old movies and television shows to appease a wide variety of fans. And, besides, having an "FX2" would pretty much mean no one would watch it, the same way no one watching MTV2, and would probably eventually be encompassed with lame reruns and FX throwaway series.

  • LiseLotteDive Jan 19, 2013

    Yes!!! I will definately watch Hostages.

  • Akyriel Jan 18, 2013

    I don't think you even need an FX channel at all.

    FOX, of course, has its own network that I think could air shows like Justified. Saying that it and others are too "edgy" for FX is b.s. While other networks have late night talk shows, the FOX network could probably run shows like Louis or Always Sunny... at night to compete with Leno and Letterman and offer alternative programming to a wider audience. Maybe they could take a chance on putting original programs on Saturday nights.

    During program development, I would hope the execs have a mind to weed out the garbage and make a stronger channel with the addition of the type of stuff they are putting on FX.

    All they would be doing is watering down creativity, spreading out the audience and lessening the ratings, diluting the money and making lower budget shows. They would be adding more program repetition to fill remaining air time we don't need either.

    If FX stayed as is, they could fill it with FOX studios programming during the day and/or late night, somewhat as adamonfire noted below, but leave prime time for originals. There is absolutely no need to make two stupid channels for this! However, that will not happen, as it seems studios like selling their shows to other network probably to make more money doing so than they may get from commercial revenue. It's too bad because it could be a sort of TV Land for FOX's catalog of shows. They could even get the rights to classic shows that were successful or popular on FOX in the past.

    I believe FOX also has a movie channel. I for one, do not get it on our cable system though and not sure if true for others or why. So anyway, they already have a channel for movies.

    Less is more. I think TV right now is a train wreck across all networks. Parent companies already owning major networks shooting themselves in the ratings and creativity foot by adding ever more cable stations just to air one or two original programs, a bunch of reality garbage, and fill the rest of air time with redundant marathons of repeats should needs to stop Networks should be consolidating, not splitting or otherwise.

  • bkyle2429 Jan 19, 2013

    so not true with FX you get Sh*t A**Hole and Bulsh*t partial nudity, their is no way in hell network tv is ready for that, and of you think that Rescue Me the Shield, Nip Tuck and SOA are not edgy better think again FX is needed!!!!

  • JT_Kirk Jan 18, 2013

    LA Times is reporting that the channel will launch in the fall under the name "FX2", while the above source is reporting "FXX". Both terrible, but only one is a recent Ferrari, and only one was an early '90s action thriller sequel starring Brian Dennehy and Bryan Brown.

  • adamonfire Jan 18, 2013

    I for one welcome the possibility of more FX exposure. FOX is already rebranding Speed to Fox Sports 1, so they could shove their soccer programming on that network. FX is just picking-up steam with its original programming and I hope this furthers it.

    All of you people keep saying they don't have enough, well this is EXACTLY what happened within Turner Broadcasting/Time Warner - they turned TBS into the comedy station, and TNT into the drama station. Guess what? They're both doing incredible and TBS has even fewer original shows than FX and TNT keeps adding more. Fox has a huge library of movies it can draw from, and a number of comedies that would fit in well on FX in reruns - Arrested Development, Greg the Bunny, Animation Domination, Better off Ted, etc. whereas the drama channel can load-up on Prison Break, Burn Notice, 24, etc.

    And yes, this would force cable companies to pick-up the additional channel.

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