Jesse Watters has been named the new host of Fox News Channel’s pivotal weekday 8 p.m. hour. The move was made official Monday morning as part of a wider primetime lineup change at Fox News, one which comes nearly two months to the day after Tucker Carlson‘s high-profile exit from the 8 p.m. timeslot and the network altogether.
Jesse Watters Primetime’s shift from 7 to 8 p.m. ET represents something of a full circle moment for the host. Watters, once a production assistant-turned on-air reporter on The O’Reilly Factor, will take over the hour his ex-boss held for many years.
Fox News has struggled at 8 p.m. ET ever since Carlson exited the network two months ago. Featuring a rotation of hosts, the interim 8 p.m. offering Fox News Tonight has tumbled down the cable news ratings rankings and often comes up short to its MSNBC timeslot competition in the Adults 25-54 demo. That will likely change, however, when Watters settles in as the hour’s full-time occupant. Jesse Watters Primetime has performed well Nielsen ratings-wise at 7 p.m. ET since its inception, and there’s no reason to believe it won’t continue to do so at 8 p.m. going forward.
In addition to Jesse Watters Primetime moving back an hour, The Ingraham Angle hosted by Laura Ingraham will leave 10 p.m. and take on Watters’ 7 p.m. ET hour. The late night-style show Gutfeld! hosted by Greg Gutfeld moves from 11 to 10 p.m. ET, while the late-night newscast Fox News @ Night, anchored by Trace Gallagher, will take over the 11 p.m. ET timeslot. Hannity hosted, of course, by Sean Hannity, remains at 9 p.m.
The new weekday primetime opinion lineup goes into effect on Monday, July 17.
“Fox News Channel has been America’s destination for news and analysis for more than 21 years and we are thrilled to debut a new lineup,” Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott said in a statement. “The unique perspectives of Laura Ingraham, Jesse Watters, Sean Hannity, and Greg Gutfeld will ensure our viewers have access to unrivaled coverage from our best-in-class team for years to come.”
An imminent programming lineup revamp was first reported by The Drudge Report last month.