Mr. Smith Goes To Hollywood: WRAL-TV Anchor Gets the Scoop on FOX Fall Premieres

Mr. Smith Goes to HollywoodWRAL-TV Anchor Reporter Ken Smith recently took a trip to the West Coast to get an inside look at the slate of FOX shows premiering this week on FOX 50.  He wrote up a report about the fun for Capcom:

The FOX Fall lineup is in full swing on FOX 50. New shows like The Exorcist and the highly anticipated baseball drama “Pitch” join familiar favorites like Gotham and TV’s number one show, Empire.

I recently traveled to Hollywood for a preview of what fans will see this season. I had the opportunity to talk to some of the stars of the FOX Fall line-up of dramas, animations and comedy.

One of the stars who is excited about this new season is Empire‘s Bryshere Gray, better known as Yazz. He tells me, he is excited to see how his character, “Hakeem”, has grown, “It’s just a great transition from being an actor, to doing music, with a great platform” Gray says.

Gray was part of a list of actors and actresses who were part of the FOX Fall 2016 Junket. I was joined by a number of reporters from FOX affiliates and entertainment shows from around the country.

We were all assembled at the Inter-Continental hotel which is next to the FOX television lot. The Stars from the shows were set up in small meeting rooms. Each reporter got about 5 minutes of a one-on-one interview. And yes, there was someone in the room, giving us the wrap sign when we were approaching 5 minutes.

Taylor Lautner, Ken Smith & John Stamos

WRAL-TV’s Ken Smith (center) interview Taylor Lautner (left) & John Stamos about their new roles on FOX’s “Scream Queens.”

What was interesting is how many A-list stars are coming to the small screen. Taylor Lautner of Twilight Movie fame and veteran actor, John Stamos, joined the cast of Scream Queens. Stamos admitted, getting an audience for a show is difficult (Grandfathered was cancelled last season). So, he opted to join the cast of an established show playing a fun character, which is says is a little out of his comfort zone. For Lautner, it was a chance to do something different.

I must admit, it was a thrill meeting academy award winning actress, Geena Davis, another A-lister. She and Alan Ruck (Ferris Beuller’s Day Off) are starring in The Exorcist. “I’ve always wanted to do horror,” Ruck says. Davis says she is a huge fan of the iconic movie and jumped at the chance to bring it to the small screen.

Another new drama FOX promoted at the Junket was the baseball drama Pitch. It’s about the first female baseball player in the majors, played by newcomer, Kylie Bunbury. Her co-star playing a veteran catcher is Mark Paul Gosselaar (Saved by the Bell/Zack Morris).

Ken Smith & Bryshere Gray

WRAL-TV’s Ken Smith (right) interviews Empire’s Bryshere Gray about the upcoming season on FOX.

I got a chance to attend the Red Carpet premiere which was at the baseball field where the movie Bad News Bears was filmed. The night had all the flavors of a traditional baseball game, cracker jacks, popcorn, hotdogs and a few other savory and sweet treats thrown in to round out a night at the ball park. The premiere episode was shown on the digital scoreboard.

I also got a chance to check out the Red Carpet premiere of Lethal Weapon, staring Daman Wayans and newcomer Clayne Crawford. The first episode was shown in a movie theater but the after party was a roof top shindig.

Other stars I had the chance to interview included, Tim Meadows and Cheryl Hines from Son of Zorn; Robin Lord Taylor and Corey Michael Smith/Gotham; Morris Chestnut and Jaina Lee Ortiz/Rosewood.

It was a fun and exciting assignment but it was great to get back to Raleigh-wood and get down the business of getting the stories about the junket on the air.

  • Find out more about new and returning shows premiering on FOX 50 at

Thanks to WRAL-TV’s Ken Smith for this capcom story & for these capcom photos.


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