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Disney Taps ‘Monday Night Football’ to Boost ABC’s Strike-Hampered Schedule

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Brian Steinberg Senior TV Editor “Monday Night Football” was for many years a staple of ABC’s Monday-night line-up before it moved to ESPN in 2006.

This fall, it will be so again. ABC will air ten more “MNF” games than previously expected this season, simulcasting then with Disney TV sibling ESPN in a move that will help the broadcast network as the industry grapples with ongoing strikes by WGA and SAG-AFTRA.

ABC said last week that the show previously scheduled for Monday, “Dancing With The Stars,” would launch on Tuesdays instead.

The football stratagem is seen as a one-time-only maneuver made due to extraordinary circumstances. ABC, like its rivals, will have fewer scripted originals this fall due to the strikes and live sports have proven, perhaps, to be the one format still able to lure an attractive, large audience all watching content simultaneously — a dynamic still craved by advertisers and distributors.

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