At the Television Critics Association press tour, Murphy told Lucas Shaw of Bloomberg that because of Fox's support of his career there, he's "hopeful" about the Disney acquisition, but he's also "very emotional".
Dana Walden, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Fox Television Group, and Gary Newman, Fox Co-Chief, have no idea what is to come or if they'll even be around to see it.
But he said Disney executives are "enormous fans of our brand" and he predicted that the future bodes well for Fox's creative partners. "We won't worry about what happens down the road when this deal happens". It is expected this transition will take a year to 18 months to close. "Development is moving forward including [deals with showrunners like] Lee Daniels, Liz Meriwether, Nahnatchcka Khan, Jerrod Carmichael and Howard Gordon".
"The network will continue to do entertainment programming", Fox TV Chair Dana Walden pledged during a Q&A, as reported by Variety.
In the wake of the mega-merger, there's been all kind of speculation over whether necessity will force the leaner, meaner, new version of Fox TV to transition away from the edgy scripted shows that made it great.
At one point, he said, it was suggested one of them make a name change. "[But] we talked with many of our producers and assured them this will be business as usual for 12 to 18 months". The shows that are on FBC will continue to be our FBC shows.
Newman began the panel by saying he wanted to show a photo of what he and Walden - collectively the pair have more than a half-century of experience at Fox - did over the holidays. In Dec. 2017, Disney said it was buying a large part of the Murdoch family's 21st Century Fox for about $52.4 billion in stock, including its film and TV studios and cable and global TV businesses. The do not expect, as Bob Iger himself puts it, to be "Disneyfied".
"Every expectation we have is that they are not acquiring Fox to turn it into some form of a PG company", he added. We have to operate as if the deal won't go through.
Newman and Walden's current job at Fox Television Group includes both 20th Productions and Fox network under its umbrella.
"I'm going to have a decision to make", she said.
The Disney chief reassured him that wasn't the case and that it was buying Fox because it believed in its creators and assets, Murphy said. "I certainly did not mean to give any hints to what the future would be". "We will remain focused on managing the business of Fox". We really don't have a timeline for our decision. "I don't think anyone knows". We're incredibly committed to our team.
"We have Modern Family on ABC, Life in Pieces on CBS, This Is Us, the number one drama on television on NBC", Newman said. No one has the luxury of only looking towards one outlet. "There's plenty of audience for these shows to all compete successfully".
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