TCA 2019: Collier Says Fox Entertainment 'Is an Open Canvas'

Pasadena, Calif. — Fox Entertainment CEO Charlie Collier laid out his plans Wednesday for the new Fox broadcast network, which will become part of "New Fox" after Disney acquires assets of 21st Century Fox.

"Fox Entertainment is an open canvas upon which we'll create new ways to do business," said Collier. It's a startup company."

Collier spoke Wednesday at the network's portion of the 2019 TCA winter press tour, which took place a day after the ABC network TCA presentation.

Related: Fox Renews 'The Simpsons'

"If there's one thing I've learned in this business, it's that crazy is in the eyes of the beholder," said Collier, who was introduced by Breaking Bad's Jonathan Banks wearing a hippo mask from Fox's The Masked Singer.

The chief said that spirit of craziness will continue into Fox's "new era."

"We will continue to be bold, take creative risks, nurture high-quality content, and deliver shared experiences that stand the test of time," said recent B&C Hall of Fame inductee Collier. "And we'll do all of this while implementing a growth strategy that'll keep us ahead of the business curve as well."

Part of Fox's strategy is to pair the right business model with the right project. One aide to that is the just-announced content accelerator Sidecar, led by industry vet Gail Berman. 

"As you know we've been preparing for the close of the Disney deal," said Collier. "And we'll emerge from that free and nimble enough to partner with the best and brightest content creators out there. We've entered into relationships that largely were not possible before for Fox."

Other highlights from the session included:

—Collier addressed the recent attack on Empire star Jussie Smollett saying, "He's an important and so talented member of the Fox family and our heart goes out to him."

Lethal Weapon star Damon Wayans said that we was done with the show. While the controversy predates Collier, he said that the show is "walking in lock-step. We have nothing to announce today."

—The exec commented on Fox's association with the Fox News brand, saying he understands why it's an issue for some people but "the bottom line is that the news division and the entertainment division are run completely separate."

—Fox's recent live production of Rent suffered from star Brennin Hunt's broken foot, which he happened during a dress rehearsal the day before the scheduled live performance. "I'm really proud of what we accomplished and really what the audience got to enjoy," said Collier. While Collier didn't specifically say the network will produce more musicals, he did say Fox is "looking for those moments to elevate the broadcast network and tell stories that should be told. That's a business we're going to be in for a long time."

Jessika Walsten

Jessika is an analyst for TVREV and Fabric Media. She previously served in various roles at Broadcasting + Cable, Multichannel News and NextTV, working with the brands since 2013. A graduate of USC Annenberg, Jessika has edited and reported on a variety of subjects in the media and entertainment space, including profiles on industry leaders and breaking news.