‘The Simpsons’ confirmed to return for 26th season in 2014

And a character could be killed off in one of its episodes...

The Simpsons will return for a 26th season next year (2014), it has been confirmed.

US network Fox has officially renewed the long-running animated sitcom, which started life as a series of cartoon shorts on The Tracey Ullman Show in 1987 before launching as a half-hour primetime show in its own right two years later.

Fox’s Chairman of Entertainment Kevin Reilly said in a statement: “For more than a quarter of a century, The Simpsons has captured the hearts and minds of fans in a way that transcends ages, languages and cultures. This groundbreaking series is not only the longest-running scripted show in television history, it’s one of the greatest sitcoms of our time, and I’m looking forward to yet another landmark season.”

The 25th season of The Simpsons began in the US on September 29. Guest stars during the current run will include Daniel Radcliffe, Gordon Ramsay, Stan Lee, Eva Longoria and Zach Galifianakis. Pacific Rim director Guillermo del Toro has shot the opening sequence for this year’s Halloween-themed ‘Treehouse Of Horror’ episode – watch it here.

In the UK, The Simpons airs on Sky 1 and the second half of season 24 will be shown from next month (November) before season 25 begins in 2014.

Meanwhile, executive producer Al Jean has recently revealed that the show’s writers are “working on a script where a character will pass away” and said that this episode “may air in season 26”.