The show will return for 13 episodes, with an option for more episodes if required. Return is seen likely for Fall. The show budget has been slashed, however the show is moving from 50 minutes per episode to 42 minutes per ep, which should help bring down some production costs (End of Show).
Why shorter episodes?
Fox was experimenting with shorter commercial breaks in an attempt to raise the rating on their network. The problem is too many people are watching TV through various time shifting and decabled methods. All of the shows on Fox will have shorter episodes next season as they return to the 42 minute format.
Why is the show being renewed?
the show's DVR numbers are huge (averaging a 40% bump from live-plus-same-day to live-plus-7), online streaming is strong. It’s a sci-fi show, which tend to bring in strong ancillary revenue such as DVD sales for sister-company studio 20th TV (The Live Feed).
The moral of the story
Fans won this round. It is up to all of us to support the show through DVD purchases and converting our friends into Dollhouse fans like us.
We can do it! Lets grow the fanbase so next year's 13 episode season will be expanded to 20 or 22!
It you missed season 1, here is a spoiler rich recap: