For the last several months, AMC and Lionsgate have been bickering over who should pay how much for the increased cost of a fifth season of “Mad Men,” and it looks like AMC’s looming upfront presentation will pressure the sides to complete the deal — though it will likely push back the season premiere later than ever before.
The sides are said to be finally nearing a deal, but with negotiations pushing into late March, Season 5 of Mad Men probably won’t be able to launch in the summer as the show normally does. The period drama usually premieres in late July. Two years ago, when Weiner didn’t close his deal until mid-January, the season premiere was pushed to August. It’s safe to say that the delay will be even bigger this year. [Deadline]
The benefit of “Mad Men” premiering in late July/August is that almost no other channels roll out original scripted programming during that time of the year, so it makes the best show on television look even better compared to the rest of the dreck on the air. A September premiere obviously won’t affect “Mad Men’s” quality, but it may lessen its impact if it has to spend its entire season going against quality programming like “Boardwalk Empire” and… ummm… “CSI: Miami”? Okay, just “Boardwalk Empire.”