August 4, 2004 --
WE'LL always have Paris (and Nicole) — well, at least for another season.
"The Simple Life 2" wraps tonight with a two-part finale, and plans are already in motion to bring series stars Paris Hilton and Nicole Richie back for another "Simple Life" adventure — but just what that project will entail hasn't yet been determined.
"We have a deal in place with Paris and Nicole for more of 'The Simple Life,' " Fox entertainment chief Gail Berman said recently. "And we are discussing ideas with [show creators] Bunim-Murray and 20th Century Fox Television right now."
That's a good thing, since "The Simple Life 2," like its predecessor, "The Simple Life," has been a hit for Fox, which has struggled without "American Idol" anchoring its prime-time lineup.
"The Simple Life 2" has averaged over 9 million viewers a week — Fox's top-rated show, both in total viewers and key demos — and has kept viewers chattering about the exploits of Paris and Nicole. The girls wrap their cross-country tour tonight (9-10 p.m./Ch. 5) with their usual, er, style.
"Fox needs 'The Simple Life' and it deserves to be renewed," says industry analyst Marc Berman of Mediaweek. "No matter where it airs, there's an audience for it.
"They should ride the wave while they can."
In tonight's first episode, the pair travel to the Click Ranch in Texas, where they give the family's father some advice on how to be more romantic with his wife. They also get jobs at the local sheriff's station.
In the second episode, the girls head home to Beverly Hills, but not before stopping at another Texas ranch to participate in a cattle drive.
Their enthusiasm takes a detour, however, when Paris and Nicole learn the cattle are about to be slaughtered — and the girls take matters into their own hands!
While Hilton and Richie have agreed to another season of the show, it's anyone's guess what will happen with their TV careers beyond that point.
Hilton, in particular, has expressed interest in pursuing a big-screen career. She'll appear in "National Lampoon's Pledge This!" next year and is filming a role in "House of Wax."
Richie will co-star on the big screen in the upcoming movie "Kids in America."
Paris Hilton will rev up for a third season of "The Simple Life" but could put the brakes on future installments.