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MTV to get ‘Real’ for 3 more years

Order makes reality skein longest-running on cable

HOLLYWOOD — Still a ratings winner after 12 years, “The Real World” is set to keep turning through 2008.

MTV has greenlit another five seasons, for a total of 20, of the docudrama about “seven strangers picked to live in a house and have their lives taped.” Order makes Bunim-Murray Prods.-produced “Real World” the longest-running reality show on cable.

Music net also ordered up another two cycles of “The Real World”/”Road Rules Challenge.”

However, there was no word on the return of Bunim-Murray’s “Road Rules.” Skein’s 13th season ended in September. An MTV spokeswoman said a decision to bring the spinoff back hasn’t yet been reached, but more episodes remain a possibility.

“We remain committed to our long-term partnership with (Bunim-Murray) and are excited to see what the next few seasons will bring,” said MTV Networks Music Group prexy Brian Graden.

Current season of “Real World” in Philadelphia continues to trump cable competish in MTV’s 12-34 demo. It remains among the network’s top-rated originals, along with “Pimp My Ride,” and reached series highs for its San Diego-set last season, which ranked as its highest-rated run. “Real World” was also the most-watched series on cable in 2004 among 12- to 34-year-olds.

Ninth season of “Challenge” continues to perform solidly for the net, frequently winning its timeslot in the core demo.