SMALLVILLE Gets An 8th Season

The CW made it official by announcing Smallville as one of the six scripted shows tapped for early renewal. Also, Season 7 is going all the way to 20 episodes.
Tom Welling's Clark Kent will be tending the farm for at least one more year, The CW revealed in a March 3 press release.

"Happy the show is back," Smallville executive producer Al Gough told ROB ALLSTETTER at The Comics Continuum.

In the meantime, "Hero", Episode 13 of the current season, will air some time in March, to be followed shortly by "Traveler," featuring Gina Holden (SciFi Channel's Flash Gordon, right) as Patricia Swann. Episode 15, "Veritas," will air soon after that.

In early February, The CW ordered 5 more episodes of Smallville, taking Season 7 to an unexpected total of 20 episodes. The New York Times reports that these new segments will begin airing on April 17th. James Marsters will return as the BRAIN InterActive Construct in Episode 18. According to The Continuum, however, Phil Morris's Martian Manhunter may take a powder for the foreseeable future, thanks to the erratically-planned Justice League movie.

Most of Smallville's cast is solid for Season 8, but the final lineup won't be announced until The CW's upfront event in May. According to STEVE YOUNIS at Superman Homepage, Kristin Kreuk, who was contracted to play Lana Lang for seven seasons only, will be back for at least a portion of the season. However, the network will have to renegotiate with fan-favs Allison Mack (Chloe Sullivan) and Michael Rosenbaum (Lex Luthor).

Keeping newly free agents on a hit show can be pricey, but BuddyTV's DON WILLIAMS believes that The CW can't afford to let Mack or Rosenbaum go, as Chloe and Lex "are probably more interesting than anyone else on Smallville, but they're also two that are often shoehorned into plots in an attempt to give them something to do."

While there's still plenty of time to make deals, Williams warns that The CW may demote one or more members of the ensemble in order to cut costs. "In Hollywood, nothing is quite as unpredictable as contract negotiations."

For her part, Mack admitted on her blog in early January that she has come to rely on predictability, and that the WGA strike gave her an uncomfortable glimpse of the future. "Life without Smallville seems so very strange to me. For the last 7 years, I’ve had a job to go to; I’ve had something on the external world, one thing, that was totally consistent and predictable." Then she noted that she could react one of two ways to life after Smallville: "totally panic and scare the crap out of myself" or "embrace the excitement of new possibilities."

Her pal and co-star Kreuk already is embracing some professional change, as Mack reported in late February. "Kristin is training to kick some serious Street Fighter butt in Thailand..."
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