Jesse Watters chosen as permanent host of Fox News’ 7 pm offering

After a long stretch with a rotating roster of fill-in hosts for the 7:00 p.m. weeknight timeslot, Fox News announced on Monday that it has chosen network personality Jesse Watters as the permanent host of a new show called Jesse Watters Primetime.

Fox News Media CEO Suzanne Scott elaborated on the decision, saying, “Jesse’s versatility and hosting acumen has grown exponentially over the last five years, and he has developed a deep connection to the audience through two hit shows, The Five and Watters’ World.

The availability of the 7:00 p.m. spot in the schedule initially resulted from a programming shakeup that occurred in the aftermath of the 2020 election, a shuffle that saw The Story with Martha MacCallum moved to the 3:00 p.m. timeslot and an array of guest hosts stepping in to assist on the early primetime show, with Watters among them.

Watters’ new program is slated to make its debut on Jan. 24, and the network emphasized that he will continue his role as co-host of The Five, the network’s popular 5:00 p.m. panel show, according to the Washington Examiner, with a replacement for his existing Saturday night offering to be announced later in the year.

In reaction to what is clearly a very high-profile promotion, Watters remarked, “I’m thrilled to take on this new challenge and am grateful for the opportunity,” as the network itself reported.

The host’s impressive rise through the Fox News ranks began back in 2002, when Watters was hired as a production assistant and then served as an on-air correspondent for The O’Reilly Factor, also assisting with investigative research for that show, and ultimately taking them helm of Watters’ World on Saturday nights in 2017.

Becoming the top weekend show in all of cable news, Watters’ World averaged 1.9 million viewers per week and won the honor of being the most-watched program in its respective timeslot since it began, according to Fox News.

In addition to his noteworthy success at the helm of his own weekly show, Watters also achieved New York Times No.1 bestseller status as the author of the book, How I Saved the World.

The up-and-coming cable news star’s profile also grew significantly due to his role on The Five, which has evolved into a true ratings winner for the network, bringing in an average of 3.3 million viewers during the last quarter of 2021 – a rare feat for a show airing outside of prime time, and likely a key factor in the massive vote of confidence Watters just received from Fox.