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'Mad Men' return date set for April with two-hour premiere

Ron Jaffe / AMC / Today
Megan Draper (Jessica Pare) and Don Draper (Jon Hamm) in "Mad Men."

Time to get out the calendars and mark the date: "Mad Men" will return for its sixth -- and presumed penultimate -- season on April 7, AMC has confirmed.

The premiere episode will last for two hours, the network said, and will be written by show creator Matthew Weiner. That episode will be directed by Scott Hornbacher; Jon Hamm, who plays Don Draper in the show, will pull double duty and direct the season's second episode.

Few other details are available, but Weiner, who spoke with the New York Times on Tuesday dropped some hints. "It will advance in time, as it does," he said, but wouldn't specify what year the show would be based in. "We're coming off a period in Don's life where he's trying to normalize, and trying to have this relationship -- a real relationship with this woman that he fell in love with."

The two-hour opener, he added, was requested by the network. "It worked well last year and they wanted to try it again," he said. "For me, I was like, well, I don't have the same set of problems (to resolve with the characters), but I do have a way to start the story with a movie." He promised "cliffhanger elements" to that first episode and said it would "foreshadow a lot (of) what the season is about."

"Mad Men" returns at a special time on AMC on Sunday, April 9 at 9 p.m. 

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