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Sunday, January 24, 2021

Fox’s new schedule: Back to the past with ’24,’ ‘Prison Break,’ ‘The Exorcist’ and ‘Lethal Weapon’

No, it’s not 2005, but “24” and “Prison Break” will be on TV next season.

Fox unveiled its 2016-2017 TV schedule on Monday morning and touted that it is nearly 90 percent original programming, the most in network history. Of course, “original” in this case also includes reboots of “Prison Break,” “Lethal Weapon,” “The Exorcist” and a spin-off, “24: Legacy.”

It all adds up to a slew of new shows across fall and midseason, which has some holes after the end of “American Idol” and cancellation of several freshman series. “Our audience is not interested in repeats, and that requires a tremendous amount of programming,” Fox Television Group Chairman Dana Walden said on a conference call with reporters.

This fall, “The Exorcist” (which Fox Television Group chairman Gary Walden called “scary as hell and perfect for horror fans”) will air Friday nights after “Hell’s Kitchen,” while “Lethal Weapon” (which boasts “tremendous chemistry” between stars Damon Wayans Sr., and Clayne Crawford as famed cops Murtaugh and Riggs) leads into “Empire” on Thursday nights.

Meanwhile, in midseason, “Prison Break,” Fox’s hit that launched in 2005, debuts on Thursday nights with original stars Wentworth Miller and Dominic Purcell. The premiere of “24: Legacy,” starring Corey Hawkins in the Kiefer Sutherland role, will air following Fox’s broadcast of the Super Bowl in February. (Sutherland serves as executive producer.)

Otherwise, some shows are fairly stable. Superhero drama “Gotham” and cop procedural “Lucifer” stay put on Monday nights, while “Brooklyn Nine-Nine,” “New Girl” and “Scream Queens” remain on Tuesdays. Crime dramas “Rosewood” and “Bones” (in its 12th and final season) are anchored on Thursdays. The Sunday animation line-up of “The Simpsons,” “Bob’s Burgers” and “Family Guy” is joined by new comedy “Son of Zorn,” starring Jason Sudeikis as the voice of a cartoon warrior who returns to his hometown to win back ex-wife and teen son … who are real-life people, played by live-action actors.

Other new midseason series include “Star,” a behind-the-scenes-of-fame drama from “Empire” creator Lee Daniels; “Pitch,” starring Kylie Bunbury as the first woman to play in Major League Baseball; “The Mick,” about a broke, dysfunctional woman who gains full custody of her rich, estranged sister’s three kids; and limited series “Shots Fired,” which explores the aftermath of racially-charged shootings in a Southern town, and stars Richard Dreyfuss, Helen Hunt and Sanaa Lathan.

For those wondering if we’ll get more of “The X-Files” after the reboot this winter, Fox executives said they’re “hopeful” another installment is in the works. But since they have to coordinate David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson and creator Chris Carter’s schedules, it’s unlikely to happen before the 2017-2018 TV season. Still, “all parties involved want to do more episodes of ‘The X-Files,” Walden assured everyone.


+ New shows are in bold

* Moved to a new time slot


8 p.m. Gotham

9 p.m. Lucifer


8 p.m. Brooklyn Nine-Nine*

8:30 p.m. New Girl*

9 p.m. Scream Queens


8 p.m. Lethal Weapon+

9 p.m. Empire


8 p.m. Rosewood

9 p.m. Bones*


8 p.m. Hell’s Kitchen*

9 p.m. The Exorcist+


7 p.m. NFL ON FOX

7:30 p.m. The OT/Bob’s Burgers

8 p.m. The Simpsons

8:30 p.m. Son of Zorn+

9 p.m. Family Guy

9:30 p.m. Last Man on Earth

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