The Simpsons Will Eventually Go Off The Air, And Fox Is Preparing For That
"We have to prepare for a day when we don't have some of our flagship animated shows."
The Simpsons and Family Guy are two of Fox's biggest and best-known animated shows, and while they have so far run for decades, they won't be around forever. Fox, which is now owned by Disney, is preparing for a future where its flagship programs go off the air, which is part of the reason why the company ordered four new animated comedy shows recently.
Fox Entertainment president Michael Thorn told Deadline that none of Fox's flagship shows are ending soon. The company ordering the new shows is meant to help solidify Fox's animated lineup. The first of the new shows, Bless the Harts, premiered in September and already has a second season coming up. The other new shows include Duncanville, The Great North, and Housebroken; additionally, Fox recently acquired the animation studio Bento Box.
"It's twofold--it's part of our business and programming strategy but also preparing for that day (in which Fox says good-bye to The Simpsons, Family Guy and Bob's Burgers) whenever it comes," Thorn said regarding Fox's decision to start four new animated shows. "We have to prepare for a day when we don't have some of our flagship animated shows, but there is no immediate plan where next month these shows are going to be off the air. Our ramping up is not tied to the urgency that some may speculate that those shows may go away."
The Simpsons and Family Guy each have at least one more season coming, with further renewal orders expected, while Thorn teased that Bob's Burgers "is going to be on Fox for a long time."
Thorn went on to say that animation is a "key part of our business," going to say that the network is considering introducing even more animated content beyond what's been announced. "When they work, they work extremely well financially as well," Thorn said of Fox's animated show lineup.
The Simpsons is a special case. Because it's been on TV for 30 years, it's very expensive as the show's stars collect huge paydays. According to Deadline, Fox has been losing money on The Simpsons for "a while" already.
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