ABC has announced its 2016-2017 season schedule and the network is shaking things up a bit by expanding it comedy block on Tuesdays, which necessitates the bumping of Agents of SHIELD to the 10:00 PM slot, moving The Middle from its long-time Wednesday berth, and delaying the start of viewer favorite Scandal to mid-season due to star Kerry Washington’s real-life pregnancy.
With other ABC favorites biting the dust last week, most notably Castle and Nashville, the network had some major holes to fill. Agent Carter star Hayley Atwell had already signed to head a new series, Conviction, even before her Marvel series was axed, and that new show will get Castle‘s Monday time slot. Kiefer Sutherland returns to the television landscape with Designated Survivor, which inherits Nashville‘s former spot. The second season of the crime anthology series Secrets & Lies will finally make its debut as well.
In addition to new and returning series, ABC also has special events planned including the Dirty Dancing movie remake, Ali: The Champion and a new David Blaine special. Not formally announced, but said to be on the drawing board, is a live musical event to compete with the NBC and Fox ratings grabbers. With a host of Broadway musicals already in the Disney (which owns ABC) family, the network has plenty to choose from including Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Mary Poppins, Newsies, Aladdin and The Little Mermaid.
ABC’s mid-season schedule will include the returns of Scandal, The Catch and American Crime, and the debuts of Still Star-Crossed, Time After Time, Downward Dog, Imaginary Mary and the limited series When We Rise.
Following is the ABC fall 2016 primetime schedule (new titles highlighted in bold):
8:00 P — Dancing with the Stars
10:00 P — Conviction
8:00 P — The Middle (New Time)
8:30 P – American Housewife
9:00 P — Fresh Off the Boat (New Time)
9:30 P – The Real O’Neals (New Time)
10:00 P – Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. (New Time)
8:00 P — The Goldbergs (New Time)
8:30 P — Speechless
9:00 P — Modern Family
9:30 P — black-ish
10:00 P — Designated Survivor
8:00 P — Grey’s Anatomy
9:00 P — Notorious
10:00 P — How to Get Away with Murder
8:00 P — Last Man Standing
8:30 P — Dr. Ken
9:00 P — Shark Tank
10:00 P — 20/20
8:00 P — Saturday Night Football
7:00 P — America’s Funniest Home Videos
8:00 P — Once Upon a Time
9:00 P – Secrets and Lies
10:00 P – Quantico
A rundown of ABC’s new fall and mid-season series:
Lawyer and former First Daughter Hayes Morrison (Hayley Atwell) is about to accept a job offered from her sexy nemesis, NY District Attorney Wayne Wallis, to avoid jail time for cocaine possession and avoid hurting her mother’s Senate campaign. Working with his team at the new Conviction Integrity Unit will let her use her brilliant mind to turn over cases, where there is credible suspicion of wrongful conviction, and give her a chance to turn things around with her high-powered political family.
In addition to Atwell, Conviction stars Eddie Cahill as Wayne Wallis, Shawn Ashmore as Sam Sullivan, Merrin Dungey as Maxine Barton, Emily Kinney as Tess Thompson, Manny Montana as Franklin “Frankie” Rios and Daniel di Tomasso as Jackson Morrison.
Emmy- and Golden Globe-winning actor Kiefer Sutherland returns to primetime in a conspiracy thriller as Tom Kirkman, a lower-level cabinet member who unexpectedly becomes president after a devastating attack on Washington. He will struggle to prevent the country and his own family from falling into chaos, as he is thrust into one of the most difficult presidencies in history.
Designated Survivor stars Kiefer Sutherland as Tom Kirkman, Natascha McElhone as Alex Kirkman, Maggie Q as Hannah Watts, Kal Penn as Seth Wheeler, Adan Canto as Aaron Shore, Italia Ricci as Emily Rhodes, LaMonica Garrett as James Ritter, and Tanner Buchanan as Leo Kirkman.
Notorious is inspired by the true-life stories of famed criminal defense attorney Mark Geragos and cable news producer Wendy Walker, who serve as executive producers. The series is a provocative look at the unique, sexy and dangerous interplay of criminal law and the media. Josh Berman is writer and executive producer, and Allie Hagan is writer and co-executive producer.
Notorious stars Piper Perabo as Julia George, Daniel Sunjata as Jake Gregorian, Sepideh Moafi as Megan Byrd, Kate Jennings Grant as Louise Herrick, Ryan Guzman as Ryan, Kevin Zegers as Oscar Keaton, J. August Richards as Bradley Gregorian and Aimee Teegarden as Ella Benjamin.
Still Star-Crossed, a period drama from Shondaland, picks up where the famous story of Romeo and Juliet ends, charting the treachery, palace intrigue and ill-fated romances of the Montagues and Capulets in the wake of the young lovers’ tragic fate. The series is based on the book by Melinda Taub.
Still Star-Crossed stars Wade Briggs as Benvolio Montague, Anthony Head as Lord Silvestro Capulet, Zuleikha Robinson as Lady Guiliana Capulet, Lashana Lynch as Rosaline, Ebonee Noel as Livia, Sterling Sulieman as Prince Escalus, Medalion Rahimi as Princess Isabella, Grant Bowler as Damiano Montague, Susan Wooldridge as Nurse, Torrance Coombs as Paris and Dan Hildebrand as Friar Lawrence.
TIME AFTER TIME
Based on the novel and movie Time After Time, executive producer/writer Kevin Williamson delivers a fantastical cat and mouse adventure through time when famed science fiction writer H.G. Wells is transported to modern day Manhattan in pursuit of Jack the Ripper. Once H.G. arrives in New York City, he finds a world he never thought possible and a young woman who captivates him.
The series stars Freddie Stroma as H.G. Wells, Josh Bowman as John Stevenson/Jack the Ripper, Genesis Rodriguez as Jane and Regina Taylor as Vanessa Anders.
Katie Otto, a confident, unapologetic wife and mother of three, raises her flawed family in the wealthy town of Westport, Connecticut, filled with “perfect” mommies and their “perfect” offspring.
The series stars Katy Mixon as Katie Otto, Diedrich Bader as Jeff Otto, Johnny Sequoyah as Taylor, Daniel DiMaggio as Harrison, Julia Butters as Anna-Kat, Carly Hughes as Angela and Ali Wong as Doris.
Based on the web series, Downward Dog is about a struggling millennial, Nan, from the point of view of her lonely and philosophical dog, Martin. One session at obedience school already makes them realize that even at their worst they may be the best thing for each other.
The series stars Allison Tolman as Nan, Lucas Neff as Jason, Kirby Howell-Baptiste as Jenn, Barry Rothbart as Kevin and Mo Collins as Kim. Samm Hodges is the voice of Martin.
Alice (Jenna Elfman) is a fiercely independent career woman whose life is turned upside-down when she meets the love of her life – a divorced father with three kids. This triggers even more upheaval when the slightly unhinged imaginary friend she created as a child suddenly reappears to help her navigate the transition from single girl to a woman ready for a family.
The series stars Jenna Elfman as Alice, Stephen Schneider as Ben, Rachel Dratch as Mary (VO), Nicholas Coombe as Andy, Matreya Scarrwener as Dora and Erica Tremblay as Bunny.
Maya DiMeo (Minnie Driver) is a mom on a mission who will do anything for her husband, Jimmy, and kids Ray, Dylan, and JJ, her eldest son with special needs. As Maya fights injustices both real and imagined, the family works to make a new home for themselves and searches for just the right person to give JJ his “voice.”
Speechless stars Minnie Driver as Maya DiMeo, John Ross Bowie as Jimmy DiMeo, Mason Cook as Ray DiMeo, Micah Fowler as JJ DiMeo, Kyla Kenedy as Dylan DiMeo and Cedric Yarbrough as Kenneth.
LIMITED SERIES/SPECIAL EVENTS
WHEN WE RISE (Limited Series Event)
When We Rise chronicles the real-life personal and political struggles, setbacks and triumphs of a diverse family of LGBT men and women who helped pioneer one of the last legs of the U.S. Civil Rights movement from its turbulent infancy in the 20th century to the once unfathomable successes of today.
Written and created by Oscar-winning screenwriter Dustin Lance Black, the limited series event stars Guy Pearce as LGBT activist Cleve Jones, Mary-Louise Parker as women’s rights leader Roma Guy and Rachel Griffiths as her wife, social justice activist Diane. Also starring are Austin McKenzie as Younger Cleve Jones, Emily Skeggs as Younger Roma Guy, Jonathan Majors as Younger Ken Jones, and Fiona Dourif as Younger Diane.
Dirty Dancing, the global pop-cultural phenomenon, becomes a three-hour filmed musical event this season on the ABC Television Network.
Dirty Dancing stars Abigail Breslin as Baby, Debra Messing as Marjorie Houseman, Bruce Greenwood as Dr. Jake Houseman, Nicole Scherzinger as Penny, Colt Prattes as Johnny, Sarah Hyland as Lisa Houseman, Tony Roberts as Max Kellerman, Trevor Einhorn as Neil, Shane Harper as Robbie Gould, J. Quinton Johnson as Marco, Beau “Casper” Smart as Billy, Katey Sagal as Vivian Pressman and Billy Dee Williams as Tito.
UNTITLED DAVID BLAINE
David Blaine returns to ABC for his final primetime special to follow-up his critically acclaimed ratings smash David Blaine: Real or Magic, with a groundbreaking new primetime event. The special reunites Blaine with Emmy Award-winning director Matthew Akers, who helmed David Blaine: Real or Magic, and is executive produced by David Blaine, along with Justin Wilkes and Dave O’Connor for Radical Media.
ALI: THE CHAMPION (working title)
An athlete, a humanitarian, and a civil rights activist, Muhammad Ali will be honored for his goodwill efforts that have impacted individuals from different walks of life around the world. In a new, two-hour special featuring live musical performances, his closest friends and contemporaries, admirers come together to celebrate the man who’s known the world over as simply The Greatest. The project is executive produced by Ron Weisner.