FOX winter 2017 TCA recap: ‘Empire’ renewed for Season 4, ‘The Mick’ gets 4 more episodes, 20th Century Fox TV’s success touted


FOX made the rounds at the winter 2017 Television Critics Association (TCA) press tour in Pasadena, California on Wednesday and had a number of big announcements to share. Highlights from the event include “Empire” being renewed for a fourth season, “The Mick” getting four additional episodes for its first season and the dating show “Love Connection” making a return.

Below is a breakdown of some of the news FOX made at their winter 2017 TCA day:

FOX spring premiere dates

FOX started its TCA day by announcing its spring premiere dates, including the following:

“Empire” renewed for Season 4

During the network’s TCA executive session, Fox Television Group Chairman and CEO Gary Newman announced that “Empire” (spring premiere on March 22) was renewed for a fourth season. David Madden, President of Entertainment for FOX Broadcasting Company, added that Season 4 will comprise 18 episodes.

“Empire” gets FOX’s largest Total Multi-Platform audience, averaging nearly 16 million Total Viewers for the 2016-17 broadcast season.

Fox Television Group Chairman and CEO Dana Walden praised the show’s strength in the midst of an early November presidential debate and two World Series games. “This has been a really good year creatively for the show,” she said. “No other show could have tolerated that schedule.”

“The Mick” gets four more episodes

In a rare move, FOX added four more episodes to the first season of “The Mick,” bringing the new show’s debut season to 17 episodes. The show is the season’s No. 1 new comedy.

“We love Kaitlin Olson — she’s a great comedic force,” Gary said of the show’s lead actress.

On a panel discussion, Kaitlin talked about the decision to take on this role in addition to her character Dee on FXX’s “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia.” She also responded to a question about FOX featuring minorities and women in primetime: “It is amazing. I’m so grateful to Fox for promising to help make the show we wanted, and living up to that.”

Jamie Foxx to host “Beat Shazam”

FOX also announced that Grammy-, Golden Globe- and Academy Award-winning actor and musician Jamie Foxx will host a new interactive game show titled “Beat Shazam.” The game show will pit two teams against the clock as they try to identify songs. The team with the highest score will go up against song identification app Shazam for a chance to win a cash prize.

The straight-to-order series is scheduled to premiere in summer 2017 on FOX.

“Love Connection” to return with host Andy Cohen

The classic dating game show “Love Connection” is getting a reboot with Emmy Award winning Andy Cohen as the host. FOX ordered 15 episodes of the one-hour unscripted series, and Andy will also serve as a co-executive producer for the show.

Each episode will feature three sets of single women and men sent on blind dates, who will share about their experiences with a live studio audience.

20th Century Fox Television’s strength across networks

During FOX’s executive session, Gary noted that 20th Century Fox Television produces the No. 1 show on six different networks today: “Modern Family” on ABC, “American Horror Story” on FX, “Homeland” on Showtime, “American Dad” on TBS, “Empire” on FOX and “This Is Us” on NBC.

Regarding “This Is Us,” Gary explained that the critically acclaimed show airs on another network because it was where the show would have the biggest chance to succeed.

“24: Legacy,” “Star,” “Shots Fired” and “Prison Break” host panels

The cast and producers of “24: Legacy” participated in a panel at TCA, which touched on casting the reboot’s lead and what the central theme of the show is.

Co-creator of “Star” Lee Daniels joined the show’s cast and producers at a panel and talked about how race and class are central issues for the new series. He also left the door open to an “Empire” spinoff.

During the panel for the upcoming limited series “Shots Fired,” star and Oscar-winning actor Richard Dryefuss called it “the most current show you’ll ever see.” There was also talk about potential for a run extending beyond this upcoming season.

The fifth season of the returning series “Prison Break” may have begun on the set of another show where stars Dominic Purcell and Wentworth Miller were working together. Executive producer and creator Paul T. Scheuring also talked about the new model for TV shows and how it benefits the viewer.

“The X-Files” to return?

When asked if there will be more episodes of “The X-Files,” David Madden responded “We hope so,” and added that he hoped to announce an update shortly.

He also said an additional season of the show would have more than the six episodes that aired early last year and that it would be ideal to have it ready for 2018.

“We feel like there is progress being made,” David said.

Take a look at TCA-related tweets with the #FOXTCA hashtag and follow @FOXTV on Twitter for real-time updates.