ABC entertainment president Paul Lee says he expects "Modern Family" to start its season on time, and is optimistic about salary negotiations with the cast.
"We're hopeful, we're optimistic that we'll be able to resolve it," Lee said at the Television Critics Association summer press tour.
ABC announced Thursday that the show's fourth season would premiere Sept. 26. That came after the adult cast agreed to take part in a table read that was canceled at the last minute Tuesday. The cast refused to take part, and instead filed suit, seeking to have their contracts voided.
The lawsuit didn't mean they actually hope to leave the show, only that they are using every means possible to negotiate.
Lee also explained the decision to give the plum 9:30 p.m. slot after "Modern Family" to "Suburgatory." It was originally given to the new alien comedy "The Neighbors."
Now "The Neighbors" will debut after "Modern Family" on Sept. 26, and will move to the 8:30 slot the next week. "Suburgatory" will take the 9:30 slot on Oct. 17.
Lee expained that he thought "Neighbors" would be a better bridge between the 8 o'clock show "The Middle" and "Modern Family" at 9, and that "Suburgatory" would be better between "Modern Family" and the new country music drama "Nashville" at 10.