Only several days after announcing that Nightline would be pulled from TV3, Mediaworks has now confirmed that Fox shows will also be cancelled.
In its statement, MediaWorks stated that all primetime series from Fox “will be immediately replaced in the schedules,” meaning that shows like The Simpsons and Modern Family have already been removed from scheduling.
Earlier, Stuff reported that an unnamed source claimed that Mediaworks had been driven into bankruptcy by its agreement with Fox. The source went on to say that “it was a terrible deal.”
Rachel Lorimer, the group communications manager for MediaWorks, did not deny or confirm these claims, instead saying, “We’re not making additional comment today to what’s in the press release and accompanying Q&A.”
The instantaneous nature of the changes has created a scheduling nightmare, which has rendered all TV guides currently in circulation out of date. Lorimer did however say that MediaWorks had addressed this problem.
“We have updated primetime schedules at FOUR.co.nz covering this week (Friday and Saturday changed) and the following two weeks since 9.35am this morning and SKY electronic programme guides are up to date. I believe Freeview EPGs have their next refresh at 6pm at which point they should be correct,” says Lorimer.
Although the release from MediaWorks stated that the broadcaster’s “two-channel strategy hasn’t changed”, there is definite concern that Fox-reliant Four will battle to hold onto viewers without its popular shows.
From Monday, Four’s lineup will include Just Shoot Me and All New Community instead of The Simpsons and Futurama.