During today’s The Orville panel at San Diego Comic-Con, show creator and star Seth MacFarlane made big news, announcing the show is hopping from the Fox Broadcasting Network to the Hulu streaming service.
The move is a surprise, as Fox had already announced a third season renewal for The Orville in May. According to MacFarlane, moving to Hulu is something he felt would be best for the show, allowing it more flexibility. No date was given for the premiere of the third season, but sources tell TrekMovie it is targeted for the fall of 2020, with production set to start this fall. The third season is expected to run 10-13 episodes and will be released on a weekly basis, which is traditional for most of Hulu’s original series, like The Handmaid’s Tale.
This move can be seen as another facet of how things have been shifting following Disney’s acquisition of Fox Studios, which owns The Orville. In May of this year, Disney took over complete control of Hulu, so having The Orville on Hulu can benefit the show, as it brings production and distribution all within the Disney family. Even though Disney purchased Fox Studios from the Fox Corporation, the Fox Broadcasting Company is still a separate entity and remains part of the Fox parent company.
Hulu is seen as a key part of Disney’s strategy, offering more adult-oriented entertainment alongside their upcoming Disney Plus streaming service, which will launch in November. This too could also benefit MacFarlane and The Orville team, giving them more flexibility in the kinds of stories they can tell.
The Hulu subscription service comes standard on most smart TVs and streaming devices, and is also available on mobile devices and most gaming devices. Subscriptions to Hulu costs $5.99 per month or $11.99 for the ad-free version.
NOTE: The move to Hulu in the USA will likely not impact how The Orville is broadcast overseas.
This is a developing story and TrekMovie will have more details about the future of The Orville and other news from the panel coming up soon, so stay tuned.