ITV director of entertainment and comedy Elaine Bedell's first commission is to hand Piers Morgan an extended run of his Life Stories chat show.

The ITV Studios programme has been doubled from its 6 x 60-minutes debut to 12 x 60-minutes. It will be executive produced by Tim Miller.

Each episode will continue to focus in depth on the life and experiences of a celebrity. The first series, which finished on 5 April with an interview with Richard Madeley, averaged 4.3 million viewers and an audience share of 23% - four points above the 9pm slot average.

Other episodes featured Katie Price, Ulrika Jonsson, Sharon Osbourne and Richard Branson.

Bedell, who joined ITV on 23 March, said: “Piers Morgan's Life Stories has quickly struck a chord with viewers. His engaging and revelatory interviews have become a brand in themselves and we're delighted to have more to come.”

Morgan, who is currently judging the new series of Britain's Got Talent, said the success of the first series had “proven my suspicion that there is room on modern television for a longer, biographical interview show”.