March 20, 2014 9:17am PT by Kimberly Nordyke
ABC to Test 'Shark Tank' on Thursdays With Special Airing (Exclusive)
Could Shark Tank be moving to Thursdays?
ABC's popular unscripted series will get a special Thursday airing at 8 p.m. April 10. It's part of a two-night Shark Tank event; a new episode also will air the following night in its regular time slot at 9 p.m. Fridays.
Sources said this move might indicate a test run in that slot. A move to Thursdays would make sense for the show, which is a top performer on Fridays, as ABC has struggled to find a hit in that time slot. Shark Tank regularly wins the night and ranks as the No. 1 series on Fridays in the key adults 18-49 demo in 19 of its 20 original telecasts this season.
Shark Tank also is up by double digits over the same point last year in total viewers (up 13 percent to 7.8 million) and adults 18-49 (up 10 percent to a 2.3 rating) and is on track to deliver its best season ever.
ABC Entertainment Group president Paul Lee has admitted that Thursdays at 8 p.m. has been a trouble spot for the network, which hasn't had a hit in the slot since Ugly Betty moved from the time period in 2009. In the years since, the slot has featured short-lived efforts including Charlie's Angels, Missing, My Generation, FlashForward and Last Resort. Struggling Once Upon a Time spinoff Wonderland is currently airing at 8 p.m. Thursdays.
Meanwhile, Shark Tank has been a solid utility player as ABC has needed plugged holes in its schedule. The series took over the 10 p.m. Thursday time slot for a few weeks following the cancellation of The Assets after two episodes and before Scandal's return.
Shark Tank stars Mark Cuban, Barbara Corcoran, Robert Herjavec, Kevin O’Leary, Daymond John and Lori Greiner, the latter of whom just released the book Invent It, Sell It, Bank It, a how-to guide to launching a new product or company into the market and making it a profitable success, via Random House.