Al Jean Hopes ‘The Simpsons’ Will Hit 1,000 Episodes

On the eve of the final year of their Fox deal, Al Jean says he’s hoping to get a couple hundred more episodes out of the gig
Al Jean Hopes ‘The Simpsons’ Will Hit 1,000 Episodes

Apparently, the writers, animators and actors of The Simpsons have more job security than the worst safety inspector in Sector 7-G.

This Sunday, the Season 35 finale of The Simpsons will send the longest-running animated series in American television history into the off-season ahead of the final year of the show’s current deal with Fox. The entire Simpsons canon will sit at 768 total episodes after Sunday’s installment, which is a staggering number of Simpsons storylines, characters and gags to fill the pages of the many Simpsons wikis. But according to one of the show’s original writers and a current co-showrunner on the series, that still isn’t enough.

Al Jean was one of the first writers ever hired to work on the spin-off of The Tracey Ullman Show all the way back in 1989, and, 36 seasons and 35 years later, he’s still hard at work adding to the annals of Simpsons history as he serves as showrunner on four to six episodes per season. In a recent interview with Screen Rant, Jean revealed his future goals for the series that’s been a central part of his life in five different decades: hit four figures on the episode counter. Imagine the kind of clip show they could do for #1,000.

“With the help of our animators, we had a full slate of shows this year, which looked terrific,” Jean said of the soon-to-be concluded Simpsons Season 35. “We did have to just take a break for four months because of the strike, which Im glad we did, that was what we should have done. But I think the show is in fantastic shape. Im biased, but I think that the current episodes are, whether I work on one, a lot or not, are great.” 

Jean then gave his prediction for The Simpsons' continued longevity, saying, “I think that the future is bright, its gonna go to 800 (episodes), and I hope 1,000.”

Right now, Fox has only ordered new episodes of The Simpsons through Season 36, so, when the show returns in the fall, it could be on unstable footing if no deal is struck over the summer to extend the series legendarily long tenure. Season 35 featured only 18 episodes compared to the 22 of Season 34, and, with 32 episodes left to go until Jeans guarantee of 800, the show would need a renewal to achieve his more conservative prediction. 

To reach 1,000, The Simpsons would likely need at least another decade on the air, which, considering its noticeably aging voice cast, seems like a more perilous prediction than getting one more measly re-order from Fox.

Jeans goals do make us wonder whether or not there is a creative reason why The Simpsons needs another decade to find a stopping point. Maybe Maggies still working up the courage to say her second word.


Scroll down for the next article
Forgot Password?