The hit AMC series Breaking Bad will definitely be back for a fourth season next year but, as Deadline TV reports, the upcoming season won't premiere until July 2011.

The show, which just wrapped up its successful third season, normally runs from March through June. Series star Bryan Cranston told the site why he thought the delay was happening:

"I think what AMC is thinking here is there will be less competition for us -- particularly from the broadcast networks -- if we launch our season during the summer than if we come back again like we did this time in March"

He also said that they will produce mini-episodes to run on the AMC website, to help fill in the longer wait for Season 4 to debut. The series goes back into production in January and it was said that these 3-4 minute episodes will premiere online sometime after they return to work.

"The idea is to keep people aware and interested in the show during the long time away. But I, for one, am eager to make these little interstitials important. I don't want them to be simply filler or recap, but something that actually moves the storyline forward. If we're going to do it, it ought to be a real part of the larger show."

Interestingly enough, July is the time of year when AMC rolls out its critically-acclaimed series Mad Men, which just started its fourth season on July 25. Both series' air on Sunday nights and it wasn't immediately clear if AMC would air both Breaking Bad and Mad Men back-to-back on Sunday nights or if Mad Men's Season 5 schedule will be altered as well.

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