Fox execs will, in shortly begin explaining to advertisers why they’re shifting Empire to 8 PM to serve as lead-in to Star, and transplanting Gotham from its longtime Monday berth to Thursday to play lead-in for Seth MacFarlane’s sci-fi dramacy The Orville. But, in maybe the most surprising headline of a morning phoner with press, Fox execs revealed they had wanted the American Idol reboot for 2020, to which the singing competition producers would not agree, finally landing a deal with ABC after a stop at NBC.

Meanwhile, with Bob Greenblatt MIA at this morning’s NBC Upfront presentation, will Fox TV Group chairs Dana Walden and Gary Newman put in an appearance at their new-schedule pitch?

Starting at 1 PM PT:

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20171:21 pm

“This is one heck of a third day at work,” Joe Marchese, ad
revenue president at Fox said to kick the network’s Upfront presentation, which
may be an industry first.

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20171:33 pm

Fox Sports’ Joe Buck, pitching its lineup of games, said Americans spend $300B more in fall months than other times of year, adding,  “in part we can thank my ex-wife for that.”

 

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20171:53 pm

When my bosses said come to Upfront and do a song about ad sales, I leapt to my feet and said,  ‘Do I have to?’,” Seth MacFarlane said.

“Ladies and gentlemen, please welcome the only two people at Fox not being sued: Dana Waldman and Gary Newman.”

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20171:56 pm

Seth’s song to advertisers:
 
“Just you watch us knock the socks off,
you’re little old TV box.
And we’ll do the same thing next year,
if there’s even still a Fox.

…and….

“Now at Fox, our reputation could use a little bump.
Cause although we’ve brought you ratings,
we elected Donald Trump.”

More where that came from.

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20172:13 pm

Lucious and Cookie Lyon, aka Terence Howard and Taraji P.
Henson take the stage for a fun round of competitive scenery chewing:

” We’re so happy to be here. We want to thank you for your continued
support,” Taraji says. “Fox is perfect home to Empire and Star – In fact it’s the only network that could even contain a show this big,” she added. “I’m just saying, other networks couldn’t handle this much Cookie.”

“Or Lucious,” Howard chimed in.

Taraji, however, is having none of it, insisting the script says “Cookie.”

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20172:31 pm

“Oh dear,that sounded pathetic,” Gordon Ramsay scolded advertisers, in re the tepid response he got from them he took the stage at Fox Upfront.

 “It’s so nice to see you and I’m very happy to be here,” he persevered. “It’s now just 22 minutes past 5, so you guys are getting hungry, right?”

More tepid response.

“Jesus Christ! You’re asleep!” he shrieked.

He and his crew began getting the advertisers sugared up with cookies, noting they’re better than the sugar handed out at the Oscars to keep the audience  pumped up.
 “Happy? We did not want you all to pass out at the Upfronts,” Ramsay beamed, before pitching his food-variety series “The F Word.”

Lisa de Moraes May 15, 20172:43 pm

Dana and Gary Fox wrap their presentation promising this year’s holiday season live production of A Christmas Story has something fun in store for that flagpole scene, and a performance of “Seasons of Love” from Rent, which Fox will do live in ’18.