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'Mad Men' to Return in 2012, But Will Matthew Weiner Be on Board?

by Maureen Ryan, posted Mar 29th 2011 12:15PM
'Mad Men' is coming back to AMC, but not until early 2012.

"AMC has officially authorized production of season 5 of 'Mad Men,' triggering our option with Lionsgate ('Mad Men''s production company)," the network said in a statement Monday. "While we are getting a later start than in years past due to ongoing, key non-cast negotiations, 'Mad Men' will be back for a fifth season in early 2012."

Those key negotiations involves creator Matthew Weiner. His 'Mad Men' contract ran out at the end of season 4, and he has been in talks with AMC and Lionsgate for several months.

Will 'Mad Men''s creator be the one overseeing the fifth season of the critically acclaimed drama? According to Deadline, negotiations have hit a particularly rough patch in recent days.

Weiner's paycheck isn't the issue; his compensation demands have been met. The terms of his new deal, assuming it goes through, will make him the highest-paid showrunner in basic cable history. He'll rake in close to $30 million over three years.

However the network and Lionsgate want more product placement, a shorter running time for the show and a smaller cast in order to save money. Many 'Mad Men' episodes clock in at around 47 minutes and the network wants to trim two minutes from that running time.

An insider says, "The cast is returning." If anything were to happen in that arena, it would affect minor characters on the show.

As far as the difficult negotiations go, we've been here before. There were thorny issues to be worked out the last time Weiner's contract ran out, and eventually those issues (some of them quite similar to the ones on the table now) were resolved and the show went forward. Let's hope that happens again here, or 'Mad Men' fans may just have to hit the bottle as hard as Don Draper did last season.

It'll certainly be odd not to look forward to the show's return in late summer, which is when the period drama usually comes back. But AMC has many dramas in the hopper for the rest of the year, including the excellent drama 'The Killing,' which premieres Sunday, season 4 of 'Breaking Bad,' which comes back in the summer, as well as season 2 of 'The Walking Dead' and the new drama 'Hell on Wheels,' both of which arrive in the fall.


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ocala777

the guy that was kicked off has no talent and rude. he made an ethnic remark the first show about getting an american dance instructor instead of one with an accent.he also was on dancing with the stars because they plan on replacing regis with him. this was his coming out party. he is a drug addicit and sleaze. he is not good enough to lick regis philbins shoes.thank you america for putting out the trash.

March 30 2011 at 5:59 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
perfectnana444

KUDOS TO CHERYL BURKE AND KIRSTY ALLEY.
I TURNED MY TV OFF
JUST GOES TO SHOW US WHAT ABC THINKS OF REAL WOMAN

March 30 2011 at 5:38 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Marnie

Nooooooooooo...how can we wait so long?!

March 30 2011 at 5:28 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Steve

Money, Money, Money. A hit show that needs to come back now! why do viewers have to suffer because of GREED?
C'mon Weiner...Don't be such a Big Weiner!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

March 30 2011 at 7:42 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
noslen1@mail.com

Mad Men Is a great show, Buy if I have to wait until 2012 for it to come back I will find something
different to watch just like I did with Rescue Me. I feel they should have handled this ahead of time.
So good bye Don it was nice knowing you.

March 30 2011 at 1:58 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Rick

it will be agony to have to wait until 2012 but I will endure and will wait. I hope that they bring back Ben Bratts character to the show so we can see how his issues are resolved...or not. I hate to think that there is going to be corp interference that would affect the show I hope it ends with a bang !

March 29 2011 at 8:03 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
maryannm725

I can't believe Mad Men won't be back till 2012. We won't even remember the ending. It is the best show on television.

March 29 2011 at 7:04 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Katie S

Well this definitely ruins a small part of my summer. Matthew Weiner better be back. He's too integral to making this show great, despite the relatively few hiccups like the WTF ending last season.

March 29 2011 at 6:34 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
Kyle

$30 million for a showrunner whose show doesn't draw a million viewers? That seems like a little much.

March 29 2011 at 6:02 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply
larashia

After last season's finale, I'd welcome a new vision to the series. I adore the show, but the finale was absolutely AWFUL last season. So, I'm not ardently awaiting the new season like usual.

Cutting down the cast would ruin the show. All of the characters are needed. Product placement should not be a big deal because the show is about advertising anyway. No doubt there is already product placement in the show. I'm on the fence on the running time.

March 29 2011 at 5:36 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

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