×
You will be redirected back to your article in seconds

Fox Entertainment’s Charlie Collier Touts Back-End as ‘Holy Grail of Television’

Fox Entertainment, now a standalone broadcast network unaffiliated with a studio after Disney swallowed its former corporate home’s entertainment assets, is “leaning into what makes [it] different structurally,” said CEO Charlie Collier at the Television Critics Assn. summer press tour on Wednesday.

“Given the trend in our industry toward consolidation, we get to determine, if for us, bigger is actually better,” he told the audience of journalists and television critics at the Beverly Hilton, saying that the “Fox evolution is well underway.”

Fox Entertainment is now part of a conglomerate that includes Fox Sports, Fox News Channel and 28 broadcast television stations.

Collier highlighted the success of “The Masked Singer,” which will debut a second season in the fall, in addition to a third season right behind the Super Bowl in 2020, and swatted away concerns that audiences might weary of the talent competition, in which celebrities compete in a singing contest while wearing disguises. Fox will air about 30 hours of the show, which Collier asserts still pales in comparison to the 75 hours aired by NBC’s “The Voice” or ABC’s “The Bachelor” series.

The network chief also sees sports and Fox’s animation block as integral to the broadcaster, touting its recent acquisition of Bento Box as a significant deal that reinforces its commitment to animation as it “aggressively” builds its own assets.

Amid an environment where its peers are quickly consolidating and vertically integrating, part of Fox Entertainment’s strategy is the exclusive broadcast-only overall deal the network just inked with “Criminal Minds” creator Jeff Davis.

Calling cost-plus and front-loaded deals “great for the few who can get it,” Collier said his network “still believe[s] in creating and sharing with our talent the holy grail of television – the back-end,” asserting that Fox Entertainment’s new structure includes the “freedom and flexibility to not only offer creators access to a broadcast network – one with relatively few layers.”

“Rather than lock down talent, at Fox Entertainment, we ‘ll also take out the right projects to other platforms when and where it makes the most sense for our creative partners,” he continued.

On the topic of streaming platforms, Fox will continue to make its shows available, once they’ve aired, on streaming platform Hulu, which Fox was a founding partner of but is now controlled by Walt Disney.

“We obviously look at our relationship with Hulu, even after the transaction, as one we’re incredibly proud of, part of the founding of Hulu and the relationship there,” said Collier. “A significant portion – certainly our animation value – is realized across platforms. Both at Hulu and Fox Now. So Fox Now is thriving, is growing, is doing very well. Our Hulu relationship is thriving and doing very well, and we feel good about both. So no plans to abandons the two. But I will note the Fox Now app is one we’re leaning into and does very well but we’re not looking to compete with Hulu.”

When asked about the upcoming final season of “Empire,” Collier confirmed that there are no plans for Jussie Smollett to return to the series, adding that “you try to get all the information and you try to make a good decision at the time.” Earlier in the year, Smollett alleged that he had been the victim of a hate crime in Chicago, though he was later accused of fabricating the event and hiring the men who allegedly perpetrated the attack.

Popular on Variety

More TV

  • Billy Porter ABC Disney FX Party

    Emmys 2019: Inside the Post-Show Parties

    After the final awards were presented at the 71st Emmys, televisions biggest stars and execs headed off for final toasts to this year’s festivities. Things kicked off at the Governors Ball but didn’t end until the wee hours at parties throughout Los Angeles. Here, Variety gives you the inside details on all the hottest after-parties… [...]

  • Batwoman CW

    'Batwoman': CW Drama Tops New Fall Shows in Two TV Awareness Studies (EXCLUSIVE)

    If awareness of a new show were directly correlated to viewership, then The CW”s “Batwoman” would be the biggest hit of the new fall TV season. According to two new studies, both exclusively obtained by Variety, “Batwoman” leads this fall’s crop of freshman broadcast series in terms of both viewers “aware” of a show, and [...]

  • Andre Previn Dead

    Emmys' In Memoriam Shows Photo of Living Composer Instead of Andre Previn

    Any “In Memoriam” segment on an awards show results in immediate viewer furor over which recently deceased figures got left out. In the case of Sunday’s Emmy Awards, it was more about who got included: the very much still-with-us composer Leonard Slatkin — or at least his photographic representation, as he was misidentified as Andre [...]

  • Supernatural -- "The Rising Son" --

    'Walker, Texas Ranger' Reboot Starring Jared Padalecki in Development

    “Supernatural” star Jared Padalecki could soon be starring in a reboot of “Walker, Texas Ranger,” Variety has confirmed. CBS Television Studios is currently developing a new version of the classic Chuck Norris-led series with Padalecki in the title role. No network is currently attached. The series would focus on Walker as he returns from years undercover. [...]

  • This is Us

    What to Watch on TV This Week: 'The Politician,' 'This Is Us' Season 4 Premiere

    Welcome back to Tune In: our weekly newsletter offering a guide to the best of the week’s TV. Each week, Variety’s TV team combs through the week’s schedule, selecting our picks of what to watch and when/how to watch them. This week, Ryan Murphy’s “The Politician” drops on Netflix, and “This Is Us” season 4 [...]

  • UMC-Marriage-Boot-Camp-Hip-Hop-Edition-WE-tv

    WE tv, UMC Reteam on Bonus Content for 'Marriage Boot Camp: Hip Hop Edition' Season 2

    AMC Networks is touting the benefits of cross-pollinating content and promos across its TV and streaming properties. In the latest bit of synergy, the programmer’s WE tv announced the continuation of its partnership with sister company UMC (Urban Movie Channel) to produce a second season of “confessional” episodes for WE tv reality series “Marriage Boot [...]

  • BLUFF CITY LAW -- "Pilot" Episode

    TV Review: 'Bluff City Law'

    As a legal procedural emanating from outside the imaginings of Dick Wolf, “Bluff City Law” at least represents something novel for NBC. But its understanding of the workings of the legal profession is frustratingly limited in a familiar way — not merely because it falls so nearly into timeworn cliché but also because it seems [...]

More From Our Brands

Access exclusive content