Fox Orders Four New Series, Including J.J. Abrams' Alcatraz

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The bodies from Fox's five-show cancellation spree are still warm, but the network has already moved on to new things. With five new spots to fill, the network has picked up four new series in advance of its Upfronts presentation next week.

The biggest of the bunch is JJ Abrams' Alcatraz, starring Lost alum Jorge Garcia (Hurley). Buzz around the internet as of late was that the show had become a longshot to make Fox's schedule, which just goes to show that you can't trust everyone you read on the internet (including me). Alcatraz, in typical Abrams fashion, isn't simply about the titular prison. The drama follows a cop and an Alcatraz expert as they investigate the mystery of 20 prisoners and guards suddenly reappearing after going missing 50 years ago.

Next on the list is The New Girl, starring indie darling Zooey Deschanel. New Girl is a comedy from Liz Meriwether (No Strings Attached) in which Deschanel plays an elementary school teacher—fresh off another failed relationship—who moves in with three dudes. Romantic hijinx will most definitely ensue.

Show number three is another female-centric comedy, I Hate My Teenage Daughter. It stars Jaime Pressly as a mom who sees her daughter behaving just like the girls that picked on her when she was in high school.

And the fourth show scooped up by Fox is the Bones spin-off Finder, which centers on a former military cop who specializes in... finding persons and things. The show has already "debuted" as a planted storyline on Bones and stars Geoff Stults (Happy Town, 7th Heaven).

For those of you keeping track of pilot-show statuses, word is that Fox's other projects—Council of Dads, Weekends at Bellevue, Locke & Key, and Iceland—will not be picked up to series, according to Deadline Hollywood.

The two drama pick-ups are safe bets: Any Abrams show is a good gamble, and other networks have proved that procedural spin-offs can work. But the comedy choices represent a new strategy for Fox, which now appears to be going for a younger female demographic.

Follow writer Tim Surette on Twitter: @TimAtTVDotCom

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