LOS ANGELES — LOS ANGELES -- "Seinfeld" will return for an eighth season next fall, NBC entertainment president Warren Littlefield said yesterday.
The announcement came as somewhat of surprise since Jerry Seinfeld and other members of the cast were reportedly considering calling it quits after seven years in the Nielsen Top 10.
As Littlefield spoke, Seinfeld walked on stage to field questions in a surprise press conference.
"I have been wondering for a while how I'm going to make the decision about continuing or ending the series," Seinfeld said. "When is it time to say goodbye when you're doing a TV series? I mean, I've never ended one before. When it comes to relationships, I know when that's over. But not a TV series."
Seinfeld said he and the other cast members -- co-stars Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Michael Richards and Jason Alexander -- started the season thinking it would be their last. But, sometime last month, they decided they were enjoying the process of making the sitcom enough to keep going.
"It's a wonderful thing that the core experience of the four cast members performing the show has remained enjoyable. It's rare, and we came to understand that, which is why we'll continue," Seinfeld said.
Bob Wright, NBC's president and CEO, also met with critics yesterday, using his session to talk about pending regulatory legislation and other issues facing the broadcast industry.
He was particularly adamant in his opposition to the V-chip, a computer chip installed in television sets that would allow parents to block out violent fare.
"It's very popular in Congress. It just rolls off the tongue so easily . . . But it's wrong . . . it's censorship," he said.