By James Hibberd
Updated January 11, 2011 at 06:11 PM EST

Terra Nova has a premiere date: Fox’s big budget Steven Spielberg-produced adventure series will have a two-night debut in May.

The first hour will air Monday, May 23 at 9 p.m., with the second hour running Tuesday, May 24 at 9 p.m.

Those familiar with Fox’s schedule and usual midseason strategy might give this news a double take: Fox is going to air the first episode without an American Idol lead-in?

Nope. The first Terra Nova will have a lead-in from House (a very special episode, one can only assume), while the second hour will indeed enjoy a surge from the penultimate performance episode of Idol (the reality hit will air on Tuesday and Wednesday that week rather than its new regular schedule of running Wednesdays and Thursdays). After the previews, Nova fans will have to wait until fall for the show to officially kick into its first season (like Fox did with Glee).

The producers and cast of Terra Nova are taking the TCA press tour stage later today, and critics will also get to watch the first trailer from the show — nope, it’s not going to be available online yet, but we’ll describe it the best we can (I know, that’s weak, but it’s what we got).

Read more:

Scoop: Final ‘Terra Nova’ regular cast

‘Terra Nova’ casting almost complete; production begins next month in Australia

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