Prognosis Good for 'ER'!
Post by: Sal
It's looking more and more like "ER" may have more life left in it.
NBC is reportedly talking with Warner Bros., which produces the series, about bringing the show back for 2008-09. That would make 15 seasons for "ER," which trails only "Law & Order" and "The Simpsons" (which are in their 18th and 19th seasons) in longevity among current scripted series.
The network and studio are discussing a possible reduction in the medical drama's license fee to keep the show on the air, the showbiz trade papers report. Also up in the air is the number of episodes for next season.
When this season started, it was about a 50-50 proposition as to whether it would be the last for "ER," which in its mid-'90s heyday was the No. 1 show on television. The writers' strike derailed those plans, and now NBC is considering giving the series a bigger send-off next year. And though its ratings are a shadow of what they once were, the show is still a proven commodity -- which could make it more attractive in a strike-shortened development season that will see fewer pilots cycle through the network pipelines.
The show, which passed the 300-episode mark in the fall, is averaging about 9.5 million viewers a week this season. It has resumed production since the settlement of the strike and is scheduled to return for six episodes starting April 10.