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NBC Rethinks Fall Schedule: Sets ‘American Ninja Warrior,’ Canadian Drama ‘Transplant’

TRANSPLANT -- Season: 1 -- Photo by: Fabrice Gaetan/Sphere Media/NBC

Today NBC announced two scheduling changes to their Fall 2020 schedule. Initially releasing a hopeful schedule where their returning hit series would air in the fall, delays to production starts have made NBC rethink the schedule.

First up, NBC acquired 13 episodes of a Canadian medical drama earlier in the summer called Transplant. It is now scheduled to premiere Tuesday, September 1 at 10/9c out of America’s Got Talent. It will air in the timeslot of returning medical drama New Amsterdam which has not started production yet. Should it get up and running, NBC could always move Transplant and put New Amsterdam in its normal timeslot or hold it for a later date.

Transplant centers on Dr. Bashir “Bash” Hamed, a Syrian doctor with battle-tested skills in emergency medicine who fled his country with his younger sister, Amira. Together they struggle to create a new life in Canada as Bash strives to rebuild his career in medicine. 

It stars Hamza Haq (Quantico), Laurence Leboeuf (The Disappearance), John Hannah (Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.), Jim Watson (Mary Kills People) and Ayisha Issa (Polar).

Additionally, NBC has scheduled American Ninja Warrior for a fall debut, having missed its usual summer airing due to the pandemic. It will air starting Monday, September 7 at 8/7c for two hours. The Voice usually airs in this timeslot and intends to film at a later date. Should The Voice return in time for the fall, NBC could move American Ninja Warrior to a different time slot.

The series was able to film in a “bubble” type setup. It filmed all 8 episodes in St. Louis at the Dome at America’s Center, the former NFL home of the Rams, before their move to Los Angeles. Filming in a large location allowed contestants and film crew to be socially distant. 50 contestants from previous seasons brought two people from their home communities to compete together. The format will be slightly changed to accommodate the safety protocols and shorter season.

We will likely see more changes to come from NBC, ABC and CBS as they face the coming season with few series ready to return filming. FOX and the CW have scheduled other acquired programming and series held from the past season to fill their fall schedules.

Lee Arvoy
Lee Arvoy joined the TV Source team in the summer of 2020 as a TV Writer.

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