Fans of Orange Is the New Black can breathe easy — their favorite Litchfield inmates will return for another three years, thanks to a new deal just released.
With the fourth season of Orange Is the New Black set to bow June 17, Netflix just released news that the series will be renewed for Season 5, 6, and 7. Cast member Laura Prepon, who plays Alex Vause, tweeted her joy at the news earlier today.
Orange Is the New Black was inspired by Piper Kerman’s book of the same name, in which she details her year inside a woman’s prison on drug charges, according to the Wall Street Journal. That book topped the New York Times bestseller list for a number of years since its original publication in 2010 and continues to appear on the list in one format or another. Jenji Kohan, the show creator and director, has also signed on to helm the series for the next three seasons, according to Entertainment Weekly.
— TV Guide Magazine (@TVGuideMagazine) February 5, 2016
“Three more years! Not quite a political term, but still plenty of time to do some interesting things. In some cultures, ‘May you lead an interesting life,’ is a curse, but I don’t live in those cultures,” Kohan said in a statement.
The executives at Netflix seem equally excited to renew Orange Is the New Black, which continues to garner fans throughout its run.
“Audiences around the world have come to love the ladies and men of Orange is the New Black, and we are eager to see where three more seasons will take them,” Cindy Holland, VP of original content at Netflix, said via a statement today.
Orange Is the New Black only covered Kerman’s 15-month prison term, so a seven-year run for the show of the same name seems like a tall order, given that another popular show, Weeds, was said to have over-extended its run. However, Weeds never achieved quite the level of critical acclaim that Orange Is the New Black has done, and with calls for greater diversity in Hollywood making the news daily, it would seem that this incredibly diverse cast has many more storylines to explore in the future.
To be sure, Orange Is the New Black would appear to be the foundation upon which Netflix is built, given the level of prestige it has attained over the course of three seasons. It has garnered its fair share of awards, too, most recently at the Screen Actors Guild Awards on January 30. There, Orange Is the New Black scooped up prizes for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series and for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Comedy Series for Uzo Aduba, who plays Suzanne “Crazy Eyes” Warren.
Orange Is the New Black also made Laverne Cox a household name. As Sophia, the inmate who is the prison hairdresser, Laverne Cox has become one of the most immediately recognizable transgender activists and actresses on television today. Orange Is the New Black has helped continue the discussion about the difficulties that transgender individuals might face, thanks to the storylines that have featured Sophia, and also speaks to the challenges that inmates might face both behind bars and once they leave prison.
— Entertainment Weekly (@EW) January 29, 2016
What remains a question, however, is who exactly will be left standing by the time Season 7 of Orange Is the New Black comes along. Contract commitments, according to the Los Angeles Times, tend to be something a question mark until before a new season bows many times, and with the continued popularity of the series, the actors and actresses involved in the show could ultimately look for more money. However, it should be of great comfort to the fans that the inmates at Litchfield will be sticking around Orange Is the New Black for some time to come.
[Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images Entertainment]