ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey (Credit: ABC/Image Group LA)

TCA17: New Season of ‘Black-ish’ Is ‘Off the Chain,’ Says Dungey

Comedy gets a new night, will anchor sitcom block

Complete Coverage: 2017 TCA Summer Press Tour

Beverly Hills, Calif. — Channing Dungey, ABC entertainment president, said black-ish will make an ideal anchor for the network’s comedy block on Tuesdays at 9 p.m.

She promised big things for the new season. “If season three is any indication,” said Dungey, “season four is gonna be off the chain.”

She said the show is “incredibly insightful, very timely, really relevant,” and funny. Its hop to Tuesdays, she said, “tells you how important we view that night.”

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Dungey said Sunday marks her first day back on the job from maternity leave.

“I’m proud of our record in comedy,” she said.

Dungey described new comedy The Mayor in a similar manner as black-ish. “It talks about things that are timely and relevant,” she said. “and does it in a funny way.”

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Regarding summer programming, Dungey said she is “very proud” to have a diverse Bachelorette in Rachel Lindsay. “Engagement has never been higher” for the series, she said.

ABC picked up a third season of $100,000 Pyramid and a fourth season of Celebrity Family Feud. ABC also announced that Match Game is returning for a third season.

Dungey said ABC is “so thrilled to have American Idol on our network.” Rumors that Ryan Seacrest has been cloned to enable him to tackle multiple projects, including Live With Kelly and Ryan, can’t be confirmed, she quipped.

American Idol will be “ABC’s version” of the show, Dungey added. “We look forward to putting our stamp and imprimatur on it,” she said, adding that “we feel like we hit the jackpot” with judge Katy Perry. She declined to talk specifics of Perry’s pay.

Dungey noted that Grey’s Anatomy hits its 300th episode in November, and saluted comedy The Middle, whose upcoming ninth season will be its last.

Regarding the alleged transgressions on the set of Bachelor in Paradise that held up production this summer, Dungey said the network has learned from it. “When something like this happens, it’s a little bit of a wakeup call,” she said.

She said ABC will continue to buy the bulk of its shows from its own studio. “Ownership is a big priority for us,” she said. “I think you’ll continue see more and more close alignment with the studio going forward.”