FOX is giving "Family Guy" (search) creator Seth McFarlane's new show a huge boost — by airing it after the Super Bowl (search) on Feb. 6.

"American Dad" (search), McFarlane's animated series about an over-the-top CIA agent and his family, will air after a football-themed episode of "The Simpsons" following The Big Game — which grabbed 89.6 million viewers last season.

"We thought it would be a great way to have an interesting show, [and] really show our support for 'The Simpsons' . . . and to use it as an event launch pad for 'American Dad,' " FOX TV president Gail Berman said yesterday.

"American Dad" is actually set to premiere later this TV season — the half-hour episode set to air Super Bowl Sunday is the pilot, which FOX is billing as a "preview."

"When we saw the first . . . scripts from 'American Dad,' it became clear to us we wanted to try to 'event-ize' it," Berman said.

"And so we decided that it might be a great fun, family entertainment night to go all-animated [on Super Bowl Sunday].

"Even though we won't be premiering 'American Dad' until later in the season, it'll be a great event."

FOX still doesn't know if it'll score points with fans of "That '70s Show," now that its best known actors — Ashton Kutcher (search) and Topher Grace (search) — will be leaving the show.

FOX has already picked up "That '70s Show" for an eighth season, and Berman said both Kutcher and Grace will appear in various episodes — but just how many wasn't immediately clear.

"Ashton and Topher will be visiting 'That '70s Show' for a number of episodes during the course of that year," Berman said ambiguously.

"We have some real fun ideas. I think that there's still life in it. It certainly has been down this season, a little bit.

"But I think if you look last year at this time, you will see similar declines, and then when our January support came behind it, we were able to lift ''70s Show' up to good levels again."

In numerous recent interviews promoting his movie "In Good Company," Grace appeared to be kissing the ''70s' good-bye.

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