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'Sunny' College Comeback

July 12, 2007 12:44 PM

FX’s comedy “It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia” returns in September. FX had a panel for the show back during January’s TCA, but the series was pushed back from its planned spring/summer premiere.

A cable network premiering anything in the fall is a risky game (just ask Sci Fi, whose “Battlestar Galatica” never quite recovered after going up against the broadcast networks’ fall premiere bombardment during its third season). The only cable network that seems to be able to pull off a fall original series premiere without taking damage is FX’s “Nip/Tuck.”

FX Networks president John Landgraf said the reason for the “Sunny” fall push was that the series – whose first-season ratings teetered on the edge of cancellation – benefits from Nielsen’s new college student ratings, which include both students and their roommates.

Since FX isn’t overflowing in half-hour-length programming, Landgraf plans to air the second season’s 15 episodes over about nine weeks, stacking the episodes into an hour block during most weeks.

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