After a month of last-minute haggling between CBS and 20th Century Fox TV over deal points, the network and studio have sealed an agreement for a ninth season of How I Met Your Mother. It will be the veteran comedy’s last season, and the show will finally reveal the identity of the mother. I hear it will be for 24 episodes. All series regulars — Josh Radnor, Jason Segel, Cobie Smulders, Neil Patrick Harris and Alyson Hannigan — are back, as are creators Carter Bays and Craig Thomas. To show the cast their commitment to the show, Bays and Thomas were first to close a one-year show deal. Then came the dramatic actor negotiations as chronicled in Nikki Finke’s story that broke the news about HIMYM‘s pending renewal. The prospects of a ninth season appeared all but dead after Segel had held firmly to his decision to leave until an eleventh-hour turnaround. I hear Segel finally changed his mind after reviewing detailed records of the relatively light workload the hybrid series requires for a fat paycheck while also allowing busy actors like him to also pursue a feature career.
“Through eight years, How I Met Your Mother has mastered the art of leading-edge comedy, emotional water-cooler moments and pop culture catch-phrases,” said CBS Entertainment president Nina Tassler. Added 20th TV chairman Dana Walden, “Carter Bays and Craig Thomas are masterful and hilarious storytellers, and we have no doubt that they will guide one of the greatest comedies of the last decade to a gratifying conclusion when they finally reveal the identity of the mother.”