Some good news and some bad news for ‘Homeland’ fans today: the national security thriller has been given the green light for a further two seasons on top of the forthcoming sixth season; but it won’t return to TV screens until January next year.

It means that there won’t be any new episodes of the popular programme in 2016 at all and that the winter months will be missing one of its annual traditions, with Showtime pushing back the premiere of season six until January 2017. All of the previous five seasons had begun in early October.

Homeland'Homeland' has been commissioned for a seventh and eighth season

However, balancing out that frustrating news is Deadline’s report that two further seasons have been commissioned in addition to the upcoming one, meaning that ‘Homeland’ will run until 2019.

The show debuted in the U.S., adapted from an Israeli series translated as ‘Prisoners of War’, in 2011 and immediately got rave reviews for Claire Danes’ depiction of a troubled intelligence officer trying to divine the intentions of a returning P.O.W. played by Damian Lewis, whom she believes has been recruited by al-Qaeda.

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However, the third season wasn’t very well received and the pretext was taken to move the show to various locations around the world to depict current global affairs and international relations. Season four was focussed around the U.S. embassy in Pakistan, while the most recent fifth season was set in Berlin.

Homeland season fiveClaire Danes in 'Homeland', s5

The sixth season of Howard Gordon and Alex Gansa’s on-going saga will reportedly depict the after-effects of a fictional U.S. presidential election (meaning it will be broadcast very shortly after the real one this November), taking place in the days between polling day and the inauguration.

37 year old Danes, who has won two Emmys for her role, has been confirmed as returning, while long-standing cast members Mandy Patinkin and Rupert Friend will be taking part in the sixth season at least.

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