CBS on Wednesday announced its plans for fall even amidst the ongoing writers’ strike, which is creating uncertainty about what will actually be able to be produced in time for fall premieres.
As has been its preference over the past several years, CBS opted for stability, keeping 22 series and picking up three new dramas and one new comedy.
Premiering this fall – again, assuming the ability to produce these shows – are Elsbeth, a spinoff of The Good Wife and The Good Fight, starring Carrie Preston; and Matlock, a new version of the old format, starring Kathy Bates as a brilliant septuagenarian who decides to return to practicing law after some years off. Elsbeth is slated for Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET/PT and Matlock will air Sundays at 8 p.m., leading out of 60 Minutes and into The Equalizer, starring Queen Latifah.
Elsbeth features Preston as Elsbeth Tascioni who has left Chicago and moved to New York City to work alongside the NYPD. Besides Preston, the series stars Wendell Pierce (The Wire) and Carra Patterson.
Robert and Michelle King, Liz Glotzer and Jonathan Tollins executive produce, with Tollins serving as showrunner. Robert King directed the pilot from a script he wrote with his wife, Michelle. CBS Studios produces.
Besides Bates, Matlock also stars Skye P. Marshall, Jason Ritter, David Del Rio and Leah Lewis.
Bates, Jennie Snyder Urman, Joanna Klein, Eric Christian Olsen and John Will are executive producers. Kat Coiro directed the pilot from a script written by Urman. The series is produced by CBS Studios.
Coming in midseason are Tracker, starring Justin Hartley, and comedy Poppa’s House, starring Damon Wayans and Damon Wayans Jr. Tracker has already earned the prestigious post-Super Bowl spot on Sunday, February 11, 2024, for its premiere.
In Tracker, Hartley stars as Colter Shaw, a lone-wolf survivalist who roams the country as a “reward seeker,” using his expert tracking skills to help private citizens and law enforcement solve mysteries while contending with his own fractured family. The series is based on the bestselling novel The Never Game by Jeffery Deaver.
Besides Hartley, the series stars Fiona Rene, Robin Weigert, Abby McEnany and Eric Graise. Hartley, Ken Olin, Ben Winters, Hilary Weisman Graham and Jeffrey Deaver are executive producers. Olin directed the pilot from a script written by Winters. The series is produced by Twentieth Television.
Poppa’s House stars Wayans as a legendary talk-radio host and happily divorced dad who still finds himself parenting his adult son (Wayans Jr.). He’s also struggling at work when his new female co-host (Essence Atkins) challenges his point of view.
Wayans and Kevin Hench are executive producers. Andy Ackerman directed the pilot from a script written by Hench and Wayans. The series is produced by CBS Studios.
Otherwise, CBS is already planning to air supersized 90-minute episodes of reality veterans Survivor and The Amazing Race to fill its Wednesday nights. Mondays will remain comedies The Neighborhood and Bob ♥ Abishola leading into NCIS, which is entering its 21st season, and NCIS: Hawai’i, which will start its third season.
Tuesday primetime is filled by Dick Wolf’s trio of FBI series – FBI, FBI: International and FBI: Most Wanted. Thursday remains TV’s top two comedies in the 8 p.m. block: Young Sheldon and Ghosts, followed by So Help Me Todd at 9 p.m. at Elsbeth at 10 p.m.
Friday features S.W.A.T., which was almost canceled but returns for a seventh and final season after fan outcry, followed by Fire Country and Blue Bloods, starring veteran TV star Tom Selleck, which is returning for its 14th season.
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