AMC has renewed Mad Men for a fourth season of 13 episodes, the network announced Sept. 1.
The fourth season renewal was not unexpected given the awards and critical praise the show has attracted. It also comes on the heels of the successful third season debut Aug. 16 that pulled in 4.5 million viewers (including repeat airings the evening of the premiere). It was a record for the show, and marked a 34% increase over the second season opener. The second and third episodes attracted 3.5 million and 3.1 million viewers, respectively, including repeat airings.
"We always saw the potential for Mad Men, and believed in and supported the series because of our strategy of developing cinematic television that complements our library of the most entertaining movies, from every genre, on television. It's been extremely gratifying to see the show develop into such a pop-cultural phenomenon with such a passionate fan base," Charlie Collier, president and general manager of AMC, said in a statement.
The show is up for 16 Emmy nominations, a record for a drama series, including nods for Outstanding Drama and acting awards for Jon Hamm, John Slattery, Elisabeth Moss. Additionally, creator, writer and executive producer Matthew Weiner has received four out of the five nominations in the Outstanding Writing for a Drama series category.
The fourth season of Mad Men is targeted to debut summer 2010. Weiner last year signed a two-year deal with studio Lionsgate that encompasses the third and fourth seasons of the show.