After weeks of speculation, Fox President of Entertainment Kevin Reilly kicked off his Television Critics Association Press Tour executive session by phoning a friend. Specifically, that of Mariah Carey, who couldn’t be on hand, but announced via speaker phone that she is officially on board as AMERICAN IDOL’s newest host. “Not being the only game in town [referring to NBC’s THE VOICE] we need to keep things fresh.” explained Reilly of IDOL’s
Paula Abdul Jennifer Lopez replacement. “As her co-manager, Randy [Jackson] has worked with her [Carey] for many years and was instrumental in this deal.”
Who’s in?! Who’s out?! How worried should Gleeks be for their favorite McKinley High students based on all the question marks surrounding the fourth season status of the cast? Not the least bit according to Reilly who reported to be very happy with how seamless the transition is. “I think it’s going to be a breath of fresh air,” said Reilly, who has already gotten a gander at the season’s first three scripts that splits the show’s time between Ohio and New York. “Because we have a good relationship with all of the actors, part of the fun is who is going to show up when. We’ll have a core of returning actors, some newer ones, and then deals with actors who will be joining the show throughout the season. Holidays, reunions, I think it’s going to be fun to see who will show up when.”
Now Will You Forgive Fox for FIREFLY?
While we’re the first to admit that it’s probably not the best timing to ask FIREFLY fans to forgive and forget fresh off last week’s emotional ten year anniversary at San Diego Comic Con, Reilly certainly does get an ‘A’ for effort when it comes ensuring FRINGE’s loyal fans get closure. “I don’t like to just pull the plug on any show because many of our failed shows, most of them have millions of fans,” said Reilly of FRINGE’s upcoming fifth and final season. “We have a checkered history with genre at best because we’re one of the only network that has consistently tried genre so hopefully we’ve gotten a little bit of a cred for seeing one through.”
Just how does Reilly console himself with being one of the four major broadcast networks shut out from the Outstanding Drama category for the first time in Emmy history? By taking a quick glance at the ratings. “I love most of the shows that were nominated but I’d be hard-pressed to find one that would work on a Network,” admitted Reilly. “Taking nothing away from their creative achievement, we are in a different business. Those shows work for cable, but those ‘hits’ wouldn’t even make the cut in the Network universe.”
From the Department of the More You Know!
“Woman control the dial,” revealed Reilly in an attempt to deflect a question about the number of women working behind-the-scenes on Fox’s prime-time lineup. “Woman saying I’m going to watch this and a boyfriend, husband or friend saying ‘Me Too!’ is the goal.” To that end, what Reilly is really excited about this Fall is broadening Fox’s brand. Once known as the home for male skewing shows such as THE X FILES and their Sunday Animation Domination lineup, Fox has quietly transformed itself into a popular destination for young females thanks to AMERICAN IDOL, GLEE and NEW GIRL. A trend that Reilly is optimistic will continue with Fall’s upcoming additions of THE MINDY PROJECT and BEN AND KATE.