For several years, every season until the most recent one actually (season 6), Matt always would hint that the Roloff family were ready to end the show and would walk away. It should be mentioned these usually came during contract negotiations and every year it would of course result in the Roloffs signing for another season. This pattern happened after Season 2 for Season 3 and then again for Season 4, and yet again for Season 5.
However, when the Roloffs announced that they were doing Season 6, suddenly Matt Roloff changed his tune as it relates to the future of the show. He began saying that they were planning on doing the show very many many more years. He has talked about how after this year he expects Jeremy and Zach to go to a 4 year college and stated that the cameras would follow them there.
Television ratings for Little People, Big World - Season 5B had fallen significantly by LPBW standards although it was still in the same ballpark as many other cable and TLC shows. Season 5B recorded several ratings in the 1.1 range. In previous seasons, 1.8's, 2.1's were common place.
As for Matt's Facebook hints; as most people know, there has been talk about a spin-off show centering around Jeremy, Zach and perhaps some of their friends. Some of the close friends have confirmed that producers had been throwing around that idea for several years.
On his Facebook page, Matt recently posted about how proud he was that Zach and Jeremy are making and inking their own deals -- some speculated this was referring to something show related with TLC. Although, some friends of Jeremy have said that they don't pay much attention to Matt's fan page, but guessed that it could have been referring to the fact that Jeremy recently purchased another old classic vehicle.
Matt also is dropping hints and teasing on his Facebook page about his newsletter anouncement:
Matt Roloff = Our family meetings always yield the most interesting results. New deals.. spin-offs?? what could that be? :)))) I love life's twists and turns.
Matt Roloff = I'm soooooo excited... I hate waiting for press releases to get approved by everyone... Just say it. :))))
And the newsletter:
August 26, 2010
Breaking News from The Roloff Family....
After an unprecedented 6 seasons and 229 primetime episodes shown around the world, the Roloff family and TLC are announcing the Final season of Little People, Big, World.
"We are very proud of what we have accomplished on behalf of Little People and ALL people of difference. We are honored by TLC's courage to educate people and break down barriers and stereotypes. We now look forward to sharing and continuing our adventurous life and lessons in the future" said Matt Roloff.
"The show has been an amazing and unforgettable experience for our entire family. Over the past 5 years we have shared the most rewarding journey that will forever be in our hearts. We are gearing up to begin new and exciting adventures as a family and we look forward to starting the next chapter of the Roloffs." We will always be grateful to our TLC family, and most of all, our fans."
In addition to above, we would also like to express our gratitude to our wonderful production company, Gay Rosenthal Productions, Inc.
We couldn't have done it without the unshakable support of our Executive Producers and, particularly the day-to-day efforts of our on site film crews and field producers.
Amy and I want to thank our families who gave us support during this crazy adventure. We also want to thank each and every person we met along the way who helped contribute to our successes.
Although saying goodbye is always bittersweet... the excitement of what lies just ahead keeps us focused and inspired.
Stay tuned .... The series is ending for now.... But it's definitely not over!
----------------------------Here is the TLC Press Release. It is somewhat of a plug for Season 6 which begins on Sept 6, 2010.
TLC CONFIRMS THE FINAL SEASON OF LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD
All-new episodes premiere September 6 at 8/7c
LOS ANGELES, CA — One of television’s favorite families prepares to say goodbye as TLC confirms that the previously announced upcoming sixth season of the hit series LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD will be the series finale. For more than 200 episodes, the Roloffs – parents Matt and Amy, both little people, and their kids Jeremy, Zach, Molly, and Jacob – have welcomed viewers to share their daily lives from their pumpkin farm in Oregon. Since it began airing in 2006, an average of 74 million P2+ viewers each year tuned in to LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD to watch the family’s adventures.
“Through LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD, the Roloffs have touched the hearts and enlightened the minds of millions of people worldwide,” said Eileen O’Neill, President & GM, TLC. “Its groundbreaking premiere introduced us all to the realities of being a little person, and we thank Matt & Amy and their family for their courage and willingness to share their lives.”
“The show has been an amazing and unforgettable experience for our entire family,” said Matt & Amy Roloff. “Over the past 5 years we have shared the most rewarding journey that will forever be in our hearts. We are gearing up to begin new and exciting adventures as a family and we look forward to starting the next chapter of the Roloffs. We will always be grateful to our TLC family, and most of all, our fans.”
Season six follows one of the most dramatic seasons of LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD ever – including a spring finale cliffhanger of Matt Roloff collapsing in his home office – leaving his family and fans concerned for his wellbeing. The premiere episode picks up right there, as the incident causes Matt to question his health and inspires both Matt and Amy, in typically different ways – Amy starts working with a personal trainer, while Matt takes a big risk by skydiving with Jeremy.
The season also finds Matt starting to think about the future of the farm while Amy focuses on giving back through her charity foundation. And, as the twins turn 20, they evaluate what to do next with their lives – do they have the drive and desire to move off the farm and make it on their own?
LITTLE PEOPLE, BIG WORLD is produced for TLC by Gay Rosenthal Productions. Executive producers are Gay Rosenthal, Paul Barrosse, Joseph Freed, Nicholas Caprio, and Jeffrey L. Weaver.
TLC’s innovative docu-series and reality-based programming include favorites Kate Plus 8, Little People, Big World, What Not to Wear, 19 Kids and Counting, Say Yes to the Dress, and LA Ink. TLC added to its menu of programming with Cake Boss and continues to expand into the food genre. TLC’s daytime lineup includes the Emmy Award-winning A Baby Story. The channel is available in more than 99 million homes in the US, nearly 8 million homes in Canada and through the website at www.tlc.com. TLC is part of Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the world’s number one nonfiction media company reaching more than 1.5 billion cumulative subscribers in over 170 countries.
Edit: You can read our article about the decision on what people are saying about Matt's announcement: