Days of Our Lives fans can rejoice. NBC has renewed its longest-running series for Season 56, Deadline reports. Days of Our Lives executive producer Ken Corday delivered the news to the soap opera's cast Thursday, according to Deadline. NBC declined to comment, and Sony Pictures TV did not immediately respond to TV Guide's request for comment.
The news comes just days after news broke that the entire cast had been released from their contracts, leading to speculation that the show, which debuted in 1965, would be canceled after more than 13,725 episodes and declining ratings in recent years.
In response to that report, Kristian Alfonso, who plays Hope Williams, posted a video on Instagram disputing rumors of the cancellation. "We are still here, and I have someone to confirm that," she said, bringing Days of Our Lives head writer Ron Carlivati onscreen. "We are not going anywhere... Don't listen to the news, always -- especially that report."
According to Deadline, the contract housecleaning occurred during the annual renewal window between NBC and Days of Our Lives distributor Sony Pictures TV. The two entities typically renew at the start of the new year, but it's likely the show's renewal was expedited due to fan outcry over the cancellation speculation.
The casting shakeup also followed an abrupt timeline shift on the soap opera, which recently jumped ahead by one year. Corday called the shift into the future a "reset," telling TV Insider, "It will be a catalyst for many more [changes] to follow." Days of our Lives is set in the fictitious Midwestern town of Salem and airs nationwide on NBC and in more than 25 countries all over the world.
Days of Our Lives airs weekdays at 1 p.m. ET on NBC.
Correction: A previous version of this story misstated the year the show premiered. It debuted in 1965.