Like sands through the hourglass, the “Days of our Lives” will continue.
The long-running soap has been renewed for a 56th season, NBC announced today, after a rocky period in which its future was questioned.
Renewal negotiations had been going on for months.
The holdup in reaching a deal was related to distributor Sony Pictures finding ways to adjust the show’s business model, including international sales, in an attempt to keep the longtime soap profitable.
Because of Days Of Our Lives‘ age and declining linear ratings in all day parts, including daytime, the shows budget has been in the red.
The new contract runs through the summer 2021, but budget issues are likely to remain an ongoing issue unless major adjustments are made.
It remains unclear which fan-favorite cast members will be returning to Salem, with Corday Productions already negotiating new deals before production resumes in March.
Head writer Ron Carlivati will be back for Season 56.
“We’re incredibly thrilled to bring viewers another season of a show that has cemented its place in television history and touches all generations,” Bruce Evans, executive VP at NBC Entertainment, said in announcing the return of the network’s oldest series.
Earlier this month, NBC Entertainment chairman Paul Telegdy told reporters at the Television Critics Association that the series, which premiered in 1965, would “of course” continue at the network, although NBC remained in negotiations with Corday Productions.
Days Of Our Lives executive producer Ken Corday told the cast back in November that they all had been released from their contracts, fueling rumors of its demise.
Ten days after taking the action, Corday insisted the show would be renewed, although the cast will not return to the set for another six weeks.
Taking four months off from production helped alleviate budget problems.
Days of our Lives, which aired its 13,755th episode in 2019, remains a television institution.
The show first premiered as a half-hour drama in 1965 and expanded to an hour 10 years later.
Set in the fictitious Midwestern town of Salem, Days of our Lives airs nationally on NBC in the U.S. and in more than 25 countries internationally.