11:19am PT by Michael O'Connell
Fox, Steve Harvey Expanding 'Showtime at the Apollo' to Weekly Series
After two specials, Fox is committing to its revival of Showtime at the Apollo. The network has ordered it as a weekly series for the 2017-18 broadcast season.
Like the recent specials, the series will be hosted by Steve Harvey, the Big Four's new de facto emcee. Harvey, who also fronts NBC's Little Big Shots and spinoff Forever Young as well as ABC's Celebrity Family Feud and the upcoming Funderdome in addition to several syndicated series, seems almost too extended to add another gig at this point. And yet he has.
“We all had such a blast on the two specials that aired earlier this season, that we thought it really deserved being a weekly event,” Harvey said Monday in a statement. “But our mission is a little different this time around. Instead of just putting on a great show, we’re going to do that and find the next great comic and the next big music star. That’s what the Apollo is all about. My roots are on that stage and I can’t wait to be there every week, looking for great talent. Who said you can’t go back home again?”
Harvey is referring to the original impetus for Showtime at the Apollo, the famed talent search taped weekly at the namesake Harlem venue. The institution is credited for launching the likes of James Brown, Stevie Wonder, Lauryn Hill and Michael Jackson.
The Fox announcement wasn't immediately clear on where Showtime at the Apollo will end up, but a weekday primetime slot seems unlikely. The recent Apollo specials weren't exactly ratings pay dirt, and real estate on the network is pretty slim — with only 13 programmable hours Sunday through Fridays. A Saturday roost for the show seems possible, but there likely won't be any news on that front until Fox presents its fall schedule during its May upfront.
The new Showtime at the Apollo will be executive produced by Jim Roush and Chris Wagner, showrunners Reginald Hudlin and James McKinlay, director Don Weiner, the Apollo Theater's Jonelle Procope and IMG's Michael Antinoro.
Harvey is repped by WME.