Not since Friends has there been a more tightly-knit group of sitcom characters than those on How I Met Your Mother. It’s hard to imagine what the show would be without Alyson Hannigan, Cobie Smulders, Jason Segel, Josh Radnor, or Neil Patrick Harris.
Well, we might find out in a few years. In a recent interview with GQ, Segel noted that he has three years left on his How I Met Your Mother contract. The actor/director/writer intends to leave the sitcom when that time comes.
He said, “It’s an amazing place to be. But when you become an actor, part of it, the secret part of it, is that you don’t want to work a regular nine-to-five job. And the secret part of a TV show is that it’s a nine-to-five job. And eight years is longer than any relationship I’ve ever been in, it’s longer than any school I went to. I think after eight years, I’ll feel like I honorably did my commitment.”
Segel continued, “It’s funny — it’s the greatest problem in the world to have. Jeez — I’m the luckiest guy in the world. But when your idol is Peter Sellers, playing one character for eight years isn’t what you’re trying to do. I don’t really feel like I have that much more to offer with this character. Maybe if we got divorced or something — but that’s not gonna happen. It’s gonna be some iteration of, like, my TV wife opens the fridge, and she’s like, ‘What happened to the birthday cake?’ And I walk in with a little frosting here [points to corner of mouth] like, ‘What birthday cake?'”
CBS, 20th Century Fox TV, and the show’s producers haven’t commented on Segel’s intention to leave but he’s probably not the only one. The other actors’ contracts also expire at the end of season eight. The fivesome signed a new contract in 2009 that brought their per-episode salaries to $90,000-$120,000 retroactively and extended their commitment to eight seasons.
The higher-ups could be planning on ending How I Met Your Mother after eight seasons or they could opt to continue on with as many original castmembers as they can get and/or afford.
What do you think? Should the sitcom continue without the core cast intact? Does season eight sound like a good place to end it?
Image courtesy CBS.