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Fans of cancelled ABC sitcom Last Man Standing have been provided a small glimmer of hope as studio 20th Century Fox Television is reportedly looking to find a new home for the Tim Allen-starring series.
In an interview with Variety, 20th Century Fox Television presidents Jonnie Davis and Howard Kurtzman said that they are looking for another network for the conservative-leaning comedy series, which ran for six seasons before being canceled by ABC last week.
“We’re starting to explore that,” Kurtzman said. “If it’s not going to go forward at ABC, of course Jonnie and I are hopeful that we can find another home for it.”
The studio chiefs also said they were surprised that ABC decided to pull the plug on the beloved comedy.
“That’s the one that’s really an open sore right now,” Davis said.
Kurtzman added, “We really were expecting a pickup. The fact that we didn’t get a pickup was a surprise and a disappointment. I think no one was more disappointed than Tim Allen, such a huge star with such a huge following.”
In a press call Tuesday, ABC Entertainment President Channing Dungey defended her decision to cancel the show, citing business and scheduling conflicts —including the decision not to continue with comedies on Friday — as the primary reasons.
The cancellation inspired a fan-created Change.org petition that went viral, collecting more than 345,000 signatures in one week.
It’s that kind of fan support that has the 20th Century Fox studio bosses excited.
“We know how passionate our fans are, and we’re seeing that now,” Davis said.
The show’s cancelation left several unanswered questions, as the series was ABC’s second-highest-rated comedy behind Modern Family. In its sixth season, Last Man Standing averaged an impressive 6.41 million viewers in live viewership.
Star Tim Allen spoke out Tuesday, telling fans that he was “stunned” and “blindsided” by ABC’s decision.
Follow Jerome Hudson on Twitter @jeromeehudson