Though it will air fresh programming in the fall, The CW will delay the official start of its next season until January 2021.
The production shutdown caused by the coronavirus pandemic has left the industry in limbo, with no one exactly sure when filming can resume. The CW, which had to cut short many of its seasons — and push the series finale of “Supernatural” into the fall — is trying to avoid the prospect of a repeat-heavy lineup at the end of 2020.
Earlier this week, The CW acquired the one and only season of DC Universe’s “Swamp Thing” and two seasons of CBS All Access’s “Tell Me a Story.” The network is also pushing some of its summer programming like “The Outpost” and “Whose Line Is It Anyway” into the fall.
“By moving our new season to January, we are stocking our fall with a balance of original and acquired scripted series and alternative programming that fits The CW brand and provides fresh programming through the fourth quarter,” said CW chairman and CEO Mark Pedowitz in a statement. “As we manage the current crisis, we’ve developed a methodical programming strategy for this year and well in to next that we believe works for The CW, our advertisers, affiliates and audience, while keeping the health and safety of our productions and creative partners front of mind.”
During a call with reporters to discuss the network’s schedule, Pedowitz said they’re “looking at additional acquisitions” for fall.
The CW’s new season will kick off in January 2021, which will include four previously ordered new series: A “Walker, Texas Ranger” reboot starring Jared Padalecki and its latest DC Comics-based series “Superman & Lois.” Those will join the returning “All American,” “Black Lightning,” “The Flash,” “Legacies,” “Riverdale” and “Nancy Drew.”
The CW will still have its own “midseason” lineup, which will include “Supergirl,” “Legends of Tomorrow,” “In the Dark,” “Roswell” and “Dynasty.” The network’s two other new series, the female-led “Kung Fu” reboot and “Republic of Sarah” will also debut at midseason.
“We do not have an exact return to production yet,” Pedowitz continued. “We will give our producers and the studios ample time to get back up and running in the best and safest way possible. Strategies and protocols are still being developed.”