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'Community,' 'Whitney' premiere dates pushed back by NBC

6/13/2014 Tim Kenneally
'Community,' 'Whitney' premiere dates pushed back by NBC © NBC / Joel McHale in "Community" 'Community,' 'Whitney' premiere dates pushed back by NBC

By Tim Kenneally
TheWrap

Fans of "Community" and "Whitney" will have to wait a little longer for their favorite shows to return.

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NBC has pushed the premieres from the comedies from its fall schedule for the time being, to be rescheduled at a later date, the network told TheWrap.

"Community" and "Whitney" were originally scheduled to premiere their new seasons Oct. 19. Both shows were scheduled to premiere their upcoming seasons in new Friday timeslots.

"Grimm" repeats will air in their place for the time being.

NBC said in a statement that it will use the shift to focus on its current crop of successful shows, which made the network the best-rated broadcast outlet during this fall's premiere week.

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"Given the success we've had for the past four weeks -- including winning the first week of the season in 18-49 -- we've decided to continue to concentrate our promotional strength on our new NBC shows that are scheduled Monday through Wednesday and have therefore decided to hold 'Community' and 'Whitney' from their previously announced premieres of October 19," the network said. "Without having to launch these comedies on Friday at this time, we can keep our promotion focused on earlier in the week -- plus we will have both comedies in our back pocket if we need to make any schedule changes on those nights.  When we have a better idea of viewing patterns in the next few weeks, we will announce new season premieres of 'Whitney' and 'Community.'"

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This isn't the first time that ratings-challenged "Community," which will eventually return for its first season since creator and showrunner Dan Harmon was ousted, was mysteriously absent from NBC's midseason schedule last November, much to the dismay of its relatively small but committed fanbase.

"Whitney" experienced similar upheaval, being moved to a Wednesday night timeslot in January.

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