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If there is one theme to come out of this year’s upfront, it is vertical integration.
The networks were all about owning — or partially owning — their own fare as they scooped up 45 new scripted comedies and dramas (and counting) for the 2015-16 season. Although ordering more from the sibling studio was to be expected at Fox, with long-time studio heads Dana Walden and Gary Newman now at the helm of the network, NBC and ABC also relied heavily on their own. In fact, this is the first year in some time that independent studio powerhouse Warner Bros. Television saw nothing picked up at the Disney-owned network, which now owns or co-owns all of its new fare.
Here’s a look at how each of the studios fared. (For last year’s tally, click here.) Note: Not included are off-cycle series like Under the Dome, Mistresses, etc.
See more Broadcast TV’s New Shows 2015-16
ABC Studios: 13 series ordered. (Up from 11 in 2014.)
Including five co-productions, ABC Studios has full or partial ownership in every one of ABC’s freshman shows. The studio improved from its third-place finish last season to lead the pack this year, with heavy hype around The Muppets and Shonda Rhimes‘ The Catch. In terms of outside sales, it was a good year for Patrick Moran‘s ABCs, which set up Code Black and a Criminal Minds spinoff at CBS as well as John Stamos‘ Grandfathered at Fox.
Dr. Ken (ABC) (co-production with SPT)
The Real O’Neals (ABC)
The Muppets (ABC)
Uncle Buck (ABC) (co-production with UTV)
Oil (via ABC Signature)
The Catch (ABC)
Wicked Crime (ABC)
Kings and Prophets (ABC)
The Family (ABC)
Code Black (CBS) (co-production with CBSTVS)
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders (CBS) (co-production with CBSTVS)
Grandfathered (Fox) (co-production with 20th TV)
Returning series: 13* (total of 26** scripted shows on the broadcast schedule vs. 20 in 2014)
* Includes CBS’ Criminal Minds, a co-production with CBSTVS.
** Not including summer scripted.
Universal Television: 12 series ordered. (Flat from 2014.)
The studio lost key outside-network sale The Mindy Project after three seasons, but is near a deal to bring Mindy Kaling‘s romantic comedy to Hulu and still has Brooklyn Nine-Nine at Fox. The studio’s only outside sale this year is to ABC, a co-production for feature film adaptation Uncle Buck, with rights belonging to corporate sibling Universal Pictures. At NBC, Universal scored again with Dick Wolf‘s Chicago franchise, which added a second spinoff, along with 10 other series, as the network wiped its 2014-15 slate of newcomers almost entirely clean. Looking ahead, studio chief Bela Bajaria‘s goal is to sell to CBS, the only network of the Big Four where she doesn’t have a series.
Uncle Buck (ABC) (co-production with ABCS)
People Are Talking (NBC)
Hot & Bothered (NBC)
Chicago Med (NBC)
Shades of Blue (NBC)
The Carmichael Show (NBC)(co-production with 20th TV)
Game of Silence (NBC) (co-production with SPT)
The Player (NBC)
Emerald City (NBC) (Included as new show after NBC canceled it and ordered a new version with new writers)
Returning series: 5 (total of 19** scripted shows on the broadcast schedule vs. 21 in 2014)
* Includes Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, which moved to Netflix after NBC passed on the straight-to-series comedy, with the future of Heroes: Reborn and Mr. Robinson still TBD.
** Includes Heroes: Reborn and Mr. Robinson, all of which were ordered and counted in last year’s tally and have yet to premiere; but does not include summer scripted hold-overs)
See more TV Shows That Failed to Survive the 2014-15 Season
20th Century Fox Television: 10* series ordered. (Up from 8 in 2014.)
With eight of its 10 sales to its network counterpart, chairmen Newman and Walden looked almost exclusively (save for WBTV’s Lucifer) to its sister studio to supply its new fare. 20th, however, is back in business with CBS following an off year in 2014, when the network passed on high-profile How I Met Your Mother offshoot How I Met Your Dad. The studio also boarded Fox’s John Stamos entry Grandfathered as co-producers alongside ABC Studios. 20th and ABC Studios were the only two to post gains year-over-year, with the former moving up two to finish third.
Life in Pieces (CBS)
Guide to Surviving Life (Fox)
The Grinder (Fox)
Scream Queens (Fox)
Grandfathered (Fox) (co-production with ABCS)
The Frankenstein Code (Fox)
Minority Report (Fox) (co-production with Paramount TV)
The X-Files (Fox)
The Carmichael Show (NBC) (co-production with UTV)
Returning series: 11 (total of 22 scripted shows, including Bordertown, on the broadcast schedule vs. 17 last year)
*Bordertown, ordered last year,is yet to premiere and was ordered to series in the previous development cycle and was counted in last year’s tally.
Warner Bros. Television: 7 series ordered. (Down from 12 in 2014.)
Notable this year is that the studio did not have any of its five comedy pilots (two of which were rolled off-cycle) go to series, though hourlong dramedy Studio City is still in contention at Fox. Although the powerhouse independent sold six fewer scripted shows this year, the result of increased vertical integration, it did add three more DC Comics shows, with Lucifer (to Fox), Supergirl (CBS) and Legends of Tomorrow (CW) all going to series. (They join Flash, Arrow and Gotham at CW and Fox, respectively.) After eight sales to NBC, ABC, Fox and CBS last season, WB’s tally slipped to four this year. Also working on the plus side: The studio’s 18 returning shows, including NBC’s now all-live scripted comedy Undateable.
Rush Hour (CBS)
Containment (The CW)
DC’s Legends of Tomorrow (The CW)
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (The CW) (co-production with CBSTVS)
Returning series: 18 (total of 25 scripted shows on the broadcast schedule vs. 28 in 2014)
See more Broadcast TV’s Returning Shows 2015-16
CBS Television Studios: 5 series ordered. (Down from 10 in 2014.)
The studio will bid farewell to billion-dollar franchise CSI this season but landed a straight-to-series order at The CW for Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, Showtime’s half-hour comedy that will be redeveloped to an hourlong musical dramedy. While its five losses are the second-most for the year, there is an upside: it’s returning a leading 18 shows next season (tied with WBTV). The studio slipped from fourth to fifth this season. Meanwhile, transfering CSI star Ted Danson to its surviving spinoff is certain to give the sophomore season of CSI: Cyber a shot in the arm.
Angel From Hell (CBS)
Criminal Minds: Beyond Borders (CBS) (co-production with ABCS)”
Code Black (CBS (co-production with ABCS)
Crazy Ex-Girlfriend (The CW) (co-production with WBTV)
Returning series: 18* (total of 23 scripted shows on the broadcast schedule vs. 21 last year)
*Not including summer shows Under the Dome, Extant and Zoo
Sony Pictures Television: 4 (Up from 3 in 2014.)
The independent studio posted a slight gain thanks in part to Fox’s straight-to-series mini Houdini & Doyle and packaged buzzy dramas Game of Silence and The Player with the third season of venerable The Night Shift at NBC, which boarded both freshman dramas as co-producers.
Dr. Ken (ABC) (co-production with ABCS)
Game of Silence (NBC) (co-production with UTV)
The Player (NBC)
Houdini & Doyle (Fox)
Returning series: 3 (total of 7 scripted shows on the broadcast schedule vs. 5 last year)
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