6:36pm PT by Lesley Goldberg, Michael O'Connell
Seth MacFarlane Lands New Animated Comedy Series at Fox
Fox is expanding its relationship with Seth MacFarlane.
The network announced Friday that it has ordered to series Bordertown, a new animated comedy from the creator of Family Guy.
Bordertown hails from MacFarlane and Family Guy producer Mark Hentemann and will debut during the 2014-15 season. The comedy takes place in a fictional desert town in Texas and centers on Bud Buckwald -- a married father of three who serves as a border patrol agent who isn't adjusting well to the cultural changes around him. It takes a satirical look at America's cultural shifts through the evolving relationships between Bud's family and that of his next-door neighbor Ernesto Gonzales, a Mexican immigrant and father of four.
Hentemann created and penned the story and will exec produce alongside MacFarlane. Family Guy's Alex Carter and Dan Vebber (American Dad, Futurama) are also aboard the 20th Century Fox Television comedy as co-EPs. The series has been in development at the network since 2009, when Fox ultimately picked up Bob's Burgers to series. (The network recently renewed that animated entry for a fifth season.)
The pickup comes at a time of decline for MacFarlane's Fox empire. Although the exec producer recently received a full-season order for live-action multicamera comedy Dads, The Cleveland Show was canceled this year and American Dad will finish its 10th run on the network during the 2013-14 season.
Family Guy, however, continues to be a powerhouse for Fox. The cartoon continues to drive some of broadcast TV's youngest viewers to its 9 p.m. Sunday slot, where it is averaging a 2.5 rating among adults 18-49 against NBC's Sunday Night Football and growing to a 3.4 rating in live-plus-7 returns.
Bordertown also comes as the network said an early farewell to Murder Police, which had been given a 13-episode order at the network but was canceled before its premiere. Producers 20th Century Fox Television plan to shop the series to cable.
Fox will also debut the 13-episode MacFarlane-produced Cosmos: A Space-Time Odyssey docuseries next year.
For the network, Bordertown joins a 2014-15 lineup that includes the already renewed scripted seasons of Sleepy Hollow, Bob's Burgers, Glee and The Simpsons, as well as new entries Mulaney, Hieroglyph, Gotham and an untitled comedy from 30 Rock's Tina Fey, Matt Hubbard and Robert Carlock.