On Tuesday, the cable network announced it has renewed the critically acclaimed series for a sixth season, months before the fifth season is set to debut.
“As Power wraps production on season five, we want to acknowledge and thank our spectacular team for producing another great season,” Carmi Zlotnik, Starz’s network programming president, said in a statement to Deadline. “We are also pleased to announce a pick-up for Season 6.”
Though there has been a lot of drama behind the scenes, Starz’s decision to bring back the show isn’t too surprising. Not only did the fourth season garner critical praise, it also racked in an average of 9.3 million multiplatform viewers per episode. It has also become the network’s most-watched original program with an average of 7.4 million multiplatform viewers for all four seasons, according to Deadline.
50 Cent, an executive producer and star of the show, hasn’t had the smoothest relationship with Starz. In 2017, he made multiple threats to move the series to another network after alluding to a dispute with Starz executives.
“I woke up feeling a little different about POWER this morning,” he wrote in the caption of a now-deleted Instagram post. “If the biggest show on your net work doesn't mean anything, what does your network mean STARZ? I'm taking my talents to south beach fuck this.”
Though 50 didn’t get into specifics, his comment was made shortly after Power’s showrunner Courtney Kemp revealed the network had denied their request for a 12-episode Season 4, which forced them to condense storylines.
“We only have 10 episodes, so we’re often in a situation where we have to pack in a lot of story because we want to get certain places by the end of the season. In the case of episode six, it was originally conceived of as a Tommy only episode. We were going to do two separate episodes: One was going to be Ghost, Kanan, Tariq, Jukebox, and the kidnapping; and one was going to be just Tommy on his journey to Chicago and what happens there,” Kemp told Entertainment Weekly. “Unfortunately, Starz would not give us the extra episode. I asked them for 12 episodes for Season 4 and they would not do it. So because they would not do it, we had to make it one episode. That’s the real answer. The upshot was that we had to lose some storylines and some story.”
Now that Power has proven to be a popular—and lucrative—series, we’ll see if Starz will give its showrunners more creative freedom.
Season 5 is currently wrapping up production and is set to premiere at 9 p.m. ET July 1. According to Deadline, 50 will direct the premiere episode of Season 6.