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Fox shifts sked for sweeps win

Fox is pulling out all the stops to win the November sweeps adults 18-49 crown.

The network has added an original episode of Malcolm in the Middle to its final night of the sweeps lineup. Fox and NBC are currently in a battle for the 18-49 title, with Fox holding a slim one-tenth of a rating point lead (5.1/13 vs. 5.0/13) with two nights remaining in the sweeps (Nov. 1-28).

The original episode of Malcolm will fill the 8 p.m. ET/PT lead-off slot on Wednesday night for Fox. The network has been using the 8 p.m. slot for repeats of various sitcoms.

Fox's Wednesday night lineup will consist of all original comedies, including Malcolm in the Middle, Grounded For Life, Bernie Mac and Titus.

Earlier this week, Fox bumped newcomer Undeclared for a repeat of That `70s Show in the 8:30 p.m. slot.

So Fox's lineup tonight will be start with an original `70s Show, followed by the repeat of the comedy and new drama 24 at 9 p.m.

NBC executives say they are going with their planned schedule for the final two nights of the ratings period.
- Joe Schlosser