HBO not only wants you to have “real time” with Bill Maher, but “more time” with him as well. While airing the 24-episode eighth season of Real Time with Bill Maher, the cable network has ordered up 35 installments for season nine of the talk fest. This news comes after the series has been averaging 3.8 million weekly viewers, a combination of the original showings, encores, and DVR viewing.
In much the same format as his previous outing, Politically Incorrect, Maher’s show features a panel of guests who discuss the current happenings in politics and the media. Yet this time there are less actors and celebrities on the panel, and more people that are knowledgeable in that given area. Each episode also includes political or current events skits as well as a monologue and interview before the panel session.
HBO senior VP of entertainment Nancy Geller said that they’ve ordered more episodes than usual because people were always asking why it wasn’t on more often. She said, “A stand-up audience of his recently was so rowdy when they were asking questions about where he’d been.”
Even if Real Time had not been renewed, Maher is still committed to a two-year deal with HBO. That calls for him to not only host the series, but executive produce it as well along with Scott Carter, Sheila Griffiths, Brad Grey, Marc Gurvitz and Billy Martin. The deal also allows him to film another special and create a new unspecified unscripted project.
Maher’s been associated with the network for the past twenty years, as Politically Incorrect was produced for an HBO production shingle first for Comedy Central, then for ABC. In addition, Maher has done nine HBO specials.
What do you think? Are you glad to hear there’s a lot more Real Time with Bill Maher on the way?
Image courtesy HBO.