Nick at Nite Lands Malcolm in the Middle

Nick at Nite has bought the cable rights to all seven seasons of Twentieth television’s Malcolm in the Middle, which ran on Fox from 2000-2006.

Beginning July 5, the series will air Sunday nights on Nick at Nite in the 8 p.m. time slot, effectively pushing the network’s official starting time back an hour. The shift will eliminate confusion over Nick at Nite’s prime time schedule, which began 60 minutes later than the rest of ad-supported TV’s nightly lineup.

The move will also facilitate family viewing, said Cyma Zarghami, president, Nickelodeon and MTVN Kids and Family Group. “We have conducted a great deal of research with kids and families and two things that we hear continuously are that they want to spend more time together and that watching television is one of their favorite ways of making that happen,” Zarghami said, by way of announcing the acquisition. “By starting Nick at Nite at 8 p.m., and adding another terrific comedy series like Malcolm in the Middle, we will serve them further and build upon the great success we’ve had with contemporary family comedies.”

Malcolm in the Middle stars Frankie Muniz, Bryan Cranston (Breaking Bad) and Jane Kaczmarek (Raising the Bar). The show joins Nick at Nite’s other off-net comedy acquisitions: George Lopez, Everybody Hates Chris, The Nanny and Home Improvement.

In addition to the sitcom pick-ups, Nick at Nite this summer will add the new stop-motion animated series Glenn Martin, DDS, which it announced during its March upfront presentation. Everybody Hates Chris joins the network in September.