Now that Mad Men creator Matt Weiner has signed a new deal to executive produce the popular AMC TV series, he’s ready to end the show. Weiner says that he wants to see Mad Men come to a close after three more seasons because, “I think that’s how long the story is.”
He told TV Guide, “I’m not The Simpsons. They’re amazing. I don’t know how they do it. I look at TV shows that I admire, and I think this is the length that they should be. At a certain point you’re driven to a desire not to repeat yourself. I want the show to end before the machinery has worn out.”
AMC has renewed Mad Men through season six and a new deal with Weiner obligates him to the series through season seven, should there be one.
Weiner planned to begin writing season five today and the rest of the writing staff will join him in a month or so. Production is expected to begin in July and the episodes should begin airing in March 2012. That equates to a 17 month gap between seasons four and five. Weiner says that he fought to get Mad Men back on the air sooner than that but AMC has such a full slate of original programming that it wasn’t possible.
Weiner notes that he almost walked away from negotiations four or five times because of the concessions that Lionsgate and AMC were asking for, including shortening episode runtimes to accommodate more commercials. Other than the season premieres and finales, 45 minute episodes will be shown on AMC (instead of the usual 47 minutes). Weiner will oversee the editing and the full-length episodes will be released digitally and on DVD later.
What do you think? Do you like Weiner’s idea of ending the show after three more seasons? How long do you think it should last?