Rule of thumb: Advertisers shy away from controversy. Corollary: Networks try to keep advertisers happy.
This is the business part of the show business equation that most people in Hollywood loathe and don’t usually like to talk about.
It came up today at the summer press tour of the TV Critic’s Associaion in Pasadena, Calif. Fox Broadcasting Entertainment President Kevin Reilly was asked why Fox decided not to air, this season, a "Family Guy" episode dealing with abortion.
"We don’t censor Seth [MacFarlane]," Reilly said, according to The Hollywood Reporter’s The Live Feed blog written by James Hibberd. "It was a business decision. It was fragile subject matter at a sensitive time."
Reilly added, according to the blog, "At that moment in time, there was a tough conversation gong on with clients and we didn’t need the headache."