'Big Bang Theory' cast angle for raises
September 19th, 2013
01:23 PM ET

'Big Bang Theory' cast angle for raises

On the heels of a highly rated season, the cast of "The Big Bang Theory" are looking to raise their paychecks.

According to reports, both Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch, who portray Amy and Bernadette on the CBS comedy, have successfully negotiated a pay increase in new extended contracts.

Although Warner Bros. Television isn't commenting, industry insiders have whispered that each actress will receive somewhere in the neighborhood of $60,000 per episode, roughly double their old rate of $20,000 – $30,000 an episode.

By the end of their contracts, the two stars are expected to earn roughly $100,000 an episode.

Meanwhile, co-stars Kaley Cuoco, Jim Parsons and Johnny Galecki are expected to seek a bigger payday when their deals are up for negotiation at the end of this season. According to TV Guide, Cuoco, Parsons and Galecki are currently pulling in about $325,000 an episode, and they're expected to ask for deals that offer $500,000 and up per episode. Some estimate that they may land close to the $1 million mark.

Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar are going to be angling for pay increases as well but as a separate group.

If that sounds expensive, keep in mind that "The Big Bang Theory" has soared in popularity, and in its sixth season was the most-watched scripted comedy on TV.

The show is also well-represented at the Emmys this Sunday, where star Parsons is nominated for a best comedic actor award, Bialik is up for a best supporting actress in a comedy Emmy, and the show itself is vying for the best comedy series honor.

"The Big Bang Theory" will start its seventh season on CBS September 26.

Filed under: Big Bang Theory • television

soundoff (123 Responses)
  1. johmmy

    Skype evening bashing in 20 min.

    September 23, 2013 at 10:57 pm | Report abuse |
  2. these 2 have been used and abuse 9 trillion times by us

    retiring-we are not lesbeans

    September 23, 2013 at 5:29 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Frida

    Personally, I only enjoy watching the guys, Amy is pretty funny, Penny too. But Sheldon makes the show for me! I watch it to see him. The whole guy cast is awesome, all very humorous.

    September 21, 2013 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
  4. Meh

    This was my favorite show in a very long time but now that the guys are getting lald and they want more money, it will undoubtedly jump the shark.

    September 20, 2013 at 3:04 pm | Report abuse |
  5. The doctor victorious

    Oh, you guys are inferring that I am stupid.
    That's not correct. We are implying it. You inferred it.

    September 20, 2013 at 8:57 am | Report abuse |
  6. works4me

    This show is very funny, especially if you understand some of it's humor. It's the canned laughter I can't stand. They need to do this in front of a live audience for that kind of $$

    September 20, 2013 at 7:13 am | Report abuse |
  7. Bill

    Seeing as the cast of the sitcom Friends were making $1 million per episode toward the end of their series run, it's really too bad that a show like this, after 6 seasons, is still paying such (relatively speaking) meager salaries.

    September 20, 2013 at 6:09 am | Report abuse |
  8. Docente

    Give Penny whatever she wants!

    September 20, 2013 at 5:38 am | Report abuse |
  9. ken

    You all have seem to have forgotten a show called Friends were all 6 made
    1 million a show

    September 20, 2013 at 5:07 am | Report abuse |
  10. Damon

    considering the ratings the show brings CBS, I'd say they deserve it

    September 20, 2013 at 4:07 am | Report abuse |
  11. Lauren

    I love this show. Yep, I said it

    September 20, 2013 at 3:41 am | Report abuse |
  12. jj

    In the first negotiations, everyone got offered $60k/per- except Raj, at $20k. The cast said they wouldn't sign unless he got the same amount. Pretty classy!

    September 20, 2013 at 1:53 am | Report abuse |
    • yan

      Not fair at all they are exploiting him

      September 20, 2013 at 4:56 am | Report abuse |
    • yan

      they are all funny,why not pay everyone of them the same salary like they did on friends as all of them bring something to the show

      September 20, 2013 at 4:58 am | Report abuse |
  13. Jimmie Russells

    Why do people think this is a "smart" comedy? They dumb down the "science" so that a wide range of viewers will understand and the jokes are very predictable.

    September 20, 2013 at 1:36 am | Report abuse |
    • yan

      Why is Raj making less money,he is the fun n iest of them all,what a discrimination

      September 20, 2013 at 4:55 am | Report abuse |
  14. The Queen Rules

    The show gets better and better.

    September 19, 2013 at 9:49 pm | Report abuse |
  15. Melissa

    Editors: check your headline. The cast angleS for raises. Cast members angle. Get your grammar right before putting it online.

    September 19, 2013 at 9:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • nightbl1d3

      Well despite the fact that you might have grade 4 education, when used in a plural context such as this one (where multiple persons are being designated by the term "cast") because, as stated in the article, they are negotiating as more than one group and not just a large group, then the proper phrasing is "Big Bang Theory cast angle for raises".

      September 19, 2013 at 11:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • i12bphil

      Oh, dear. The grammar was off. Now the whole article is null and void.

      September 20, 2013 at 12:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Jack

      Get a life and get your head out of the clouds.

      September 20, 2013 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
  16. The Pope

    I always thought this was a prOn show so I never watched it.

    September 19, 2013 at 8:53 pm | Report abuse |
  17. kate

    I love the show. favoritte character–>sheldon

    September 19, 2013 at 7:59 pm | Report abuse |
    • Farce

      This show is an absolute joke. I know who the writers are behind it. I know who they consult, yet it's still a joke to me.

      This show is TERRIBLE. The 'audience' laughs at every....single....line.... and it's just awful.

      I'm a nanotech/physics geek, and I find this show intolerable to watch. Feed the sheeple.

      September 19, 2013 at 9:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Agreed

      the 2 are awful.

      September 19, 2013 at 9:02 pm | Report abuse |
  18. Lindalou

    This show will be around forever in syndication. If everyone's got smart representation, they should be pulling in residual checks forever.

    September 19, 2013 at 7:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Skipper

      The show is still pretty good, but seems to be fading. Too many scenes are shot in the living room which gets boring. The actors better get their agreements finalized before the ratings drop – TV audiences are extremely fickle.

      September 19, 2013 at 8:11 pm | Report abuse |
  19. Timmy C

    For those who think these actors shouldn't get so much money, I'll try to explain:
    The money is already there. Advertisers are paying a lot of money for ads (and product placement and whatnot) during every episode... because you, the fans, respond to those ads and product placement. If the actors didn't ask for more money, it would just go to CBS execs' bonuses or for developing new shows that advertisers might want to influence you through. And CBS wouldn't be giving that money to the actors if the actors didn't create that value for CBS.
    So: the money is already there, you're giving it to the advertisers, and advertisers are giving a slice of it to CBS and CBS are giving a slice of it to actors (and writers and crew, etc). The only question is who gets how much. Wounded veterans and little girls with cancer are not going to get any of that money no matter how much (or how little) the actors work for.

    September 19, 2013 at 7:40 pm | Report abuse |
  20. Arlene


    September 19, 2013 at 7:35 pm | Report abuse |
    • OhioMario

      Hahah, true, it's all business. We cable TV watchers end up paying those inflated salaries anyways in the form of higher cable fees.

      September 19, 2013 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • jujubeans

      I hate to nit pick, but I believe it's bazinga!

      September 19, 2013 at 7:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • jujubeans

      And Mario, it doesn't affect your cable bill, the advertisers pay for it.

      September 19, 2013 at 7:45 pm | Report abuse |
  21. BB

    Knock,Knock,Knock Money!
    Knock,Knock,Knock Money!
    Knock,Knock,Knock Money!

    CBS will make a Billion off this show. Surprised Amy and Burnadette only get 20-30K a week. seems low.

    September 19, 2013 at 5:55 pm | Report abuse |
  22. Viewer with standards

    Words cannot express how much I hate this stupid show. Seriously people, are you on laughing gas? It isn't funny. Seriously.

    September 19, 2013 at 5:53 pm | Report abuse |
    • RackFace

      This show is the dumbest, most boring piece of trash show on T.V. right now! All the actors SUK!

      September 19, 2013 at 6:13 pm | Report abuse |
    • jujubeans

      Two people with no sense of humor. Maybe it's over their heads.

      September 19, 2013 at 6:47 pm | Report abuse |
    • adrifter

      It would be interesting to find out what TV programs Viewer with Standards and RackFace do enjoy.

      September 19, 2013 at 7:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • ionymous

      The show is for geeks. Maybe you're not geeky enough. On the other hand, I'm a geek but sit straight faced through much of this show and many other comedies. Seems like I've heard it all before.

      September 19, 2013 at 7:26 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jason Me Can

      You people with the greed comments make me laugh. Do you have any idea how much money people are making off this show... waaay more than the actors!

      September 19, 2013 at 7:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • i12bphil

      If the humor is too hard to get, perhaps you should go back to watching toilet based humor, like Family Guy. Kinder-gardeners laugh at the same kind of jokes.

      September 20, 2013 at 12:20 am | Report abuse |
  23. Stentor

    Good for them, they deserve it. That show is still very funny even after six seasons, some of the episodes have been a little ho-hum, but as they move forward, there's a lot of material yet to be covered. I wish they'd brink back Leslie Winkle though, Sara Gilbert's character would be a good foil for Barry Kripke, I'd like to see those two square off against one another, maybe get into a double tee-off against Sheldon too. That would be hilarious, he wouldn't know what to do with two people bagging on him simultaneously.

    September 19, 2013 at 5:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jen

      I agree with everything you said Stentor. I loved the episodes with Leslie Winkle and Barry Kripke is hilarious! Sheldon has always been my favorite. Bazinga!

      September 19, 2013 at 6:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • lornee

      Ha! that was a wery funny weemark. I waffed and waffed...

      September 19, 2013 at 9:37 pm | Report abuse |
  24. Margherita

    I love this show

    September 19, 2013 at 5:35 pm | Report abuse |
  25. Sharkmann

    Raises? The Big Bang is over, it now the big fizzle out as they run out of story ideas.Sad, but true, no sitcom can last forever.

    September 19, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
  26. timelord7202

    As usual.

    Cast wants more.

    Network charges more for advertising.

    Network puts out more advertisements.

    Companies putting out the advertisements will charge more because their P&L statements must never go down or else the people who own stock in the company will be upset that they are losing their retirement money because they decided a 401k stock market plan is better than a pension or even a mattress...

    Keep in mind the network makes far, far more than all the actors that make the product that the network enjoys the most.

    But even then – with STEM and other career fields being devalued, both network and actors and just about everyone else in the process are being a little greedy right now. After season 6 turning Raj into a total jerk when he insults the people in the comic store after putting out a sympathetic, reasoned soliloquy, and a few other choice scenes that show how devolved society is (laughing at people having their property stolen = classy. And if people are stranded and had to walk a long distance and look tired and thirsty, you help them... doesn't matter what they look like – wow, that almost sounds like a rant against a racist person, doesn't it...)

    September 19, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
  27. RayNAiken

    They are just copying Obama's campaign on wealth redistribution from the very rich at CBS to the less wealthy cast of the show. If you don't like that then you are racist!

    September 19, 2013 at 5:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • timelord7202

      If you say so...

      Oh, labor creates all wealth – without the writers and actors and cameramen, and even the sponsors, the network would have a big fat zero.

      Consider that.

      September 19, 2013 at 5:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • svann

      Contract negotiations are at the very heart of capitalism. How is this not obvious to you?

      September 19, 2013 at 5:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fred Evil

      Your desperation is laughable. Your comment is patently foolish.

      September 19, 2013 at 8:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      Back to Faux News for you, little buddy.

      September 19, 2013 at 9:21 pm | Report abuse |
  28. Amyfan

    Oh, so that's how much a neuroscience PhD gets you after you graduate! *applies to grad school*

    September 19, 2013 at 5:17 pm | Report abuse |
  29. CLOWN

    They should work for free, this show is not funny. 🙁

    September 19, 2013 at 5:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • jujubeans

      So when did you have your humorectomy?

      September 19, 2013 at 5:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • timelord7202

      Blame the writers – the show used to be funny. The actors are less likely to get bored and uninspired than the writers – and writing is not an easy job, believe it or not. The writers probably would get burnout more quickly...

      September 19, 2013 at 5:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • i12bphil

      The show is hilarious!! Especially if you understand physics!!

      September 20, 2013 at 12:21 am | Report abuse |
  30. JayDavid

    It's time to kill off "The Big Bang Theory."
    Penny and Leonard break up and Penny moves back to Nebraska.
    Howard and pregnant Bernadette move back to the Boston area so Howard can get his PhD.
    Sheldon hooks up with Leonard's mother and moves to the East Coast.
    Raj, Leonard and Amy? I'm still working on that.
    Unfortunately, Chuck Lorre will probably run "The Big Bang Theory" into the ground...just like he did with "Two and a half man." Hey, maybe Amy can hook up with Ashton Kutcher's character?
    And Alan can move to East Texas to be with Mary Cooper.
    And maybe Raj really is gay.
    That only leaves Leonard.

    September 19, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • marin

      More like time to kill you off if that post is any indication of your worth...

      September 19, 2013 at 5:00 pm | Report abuse |
  31. Four Two

    Awwwwww, what's the matter? Not making enough money already? Typical celebs. Always want more and not grateful for what they have. Just cut their pay as it stands now, THEN they'll realize they've got more than enough. Ridiculous.

    September 19, 2013 at 4:39 pm | Report abuse |
    • pottershop2

      I guess you never want a raise and no matter how successful you are you're fine with the salary you start with.

      September 19, 2013 at 4:57 pm | Report abuse |
    • JohnC

      Well they could be taking the money from the network and advertisers and giving much of it away to charity for all you know which is more than I can say the network would do. If you have zero greed or materialism you should still ask for as much as you can get then choose to make good use of that money. Not saying they are charitable but it doesn't make sense for them to tell the money grabbing network to keep it.

      September 19, 2013 at 5:09 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fred Evil

      What happens when your show, who brought you on at a very low salary so the show could start out yet still be profitable, blows up, and the station starts making 100 times what they expected on the show? Your next contact comes up, do you accept the same money, even though your work is producing HUGE returns far in excess of what they expected, or do you ask for more, since you are helping PRODUCE more?

      I see, when a LIBERAL asks for more money, that's bad, mmm'k?

      September 19, 2013 at 5:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • Richard

      Simple supply and demand principle. Create more demand (for self), supply remains unchanged, product (self) value automatically increases. Leaving money on the table is illogical. Garner as much wealth as you can. Ethical distribution of your amassed wealth should ultimately take priority.

      September 19, 2013 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  32. coderjones

    Fan no more

    September 19, 2013 at 4:36 pm | Report abuse |
  33. vivi

    I really enjoy the show but it makes me sick to see how greedy they are. My husband was a warrant officer in the military came back from Afghanistan very sick. We've had to fight to get money from the VA and I had to resign from my job of 16 years to care care of my spouse. When I see how much those people make and how much more money they want,it makes me sick to my stomach and consequently I have decided to boycott their show. Our soldiers put their lives on the line for greedy unappreciative people! They should be ashamed , How can we put those actors and athletes on a pedestal when our soldiers are dying to protect us?

    September 19, 2013 at 4:15 pm | Report abuse |
    • humtake

      You do know the more they make, the more they pay in taxes and the more they purchase which also means they pay more taxes. Just because they worked hard and chose a career path your husband didn't doesn't mean they are devils.

      September 19, 2013 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • JohnC

      If you want to judge their morality then do so based on how they spend the money (help others, etc.). But otherwise the correct amount they should ask for is whatever they can get. The money is coming in from advertisers regardless and someone is getting that money. It may as well be the actors as much as any one else. Then we can hope but not demand that they use that money in good ways.

      September 19, 2013 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mo

      Sorry to hear about your husband, but if you have issues with anyone making more money than soldiers, then you should probably get rid of everything. Your TV – all actors / actresses get paid well. Your car – auto companies and insurance companies make a tons of money. Your house – your lender is making a ton in interest. There is nothing you can do where someone is not getting wealthy off of it.

      September 19, 2013 at 4:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • Ajax

      Viva la revolucion!

      September 19, 2013 at 4:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      "Oh, I see. What we got here is a crusader... Everybody know the poor are always being F'd over by the rich. Always have, always will. "

      September 19, 2013 at 4:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • tjarksd

      As a veteran I agree with you vivi. I feel the same way with the salaries professional athletes get...and I'm a huge football fan. Thank you for your family's service.

      I love the show, but $325,000 – $1 million an episode is just ridiculous.

      September 19, 2013 at 4:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • dlws8607

      I have to agree with the people who are pointing out that your husband chose to be in the military and you chose to marry him. That is all on you two. I think it is pathetic that the western world pays entertainers of all sorts, including professional athletes and coaches at public universities, massive salaries. That does not mean the people who collect those salaries are evil. It means society is out of whack as far as what it values. At the same time, I do not think that we should continue trying to maintain the world's largest and most expensive military in the name of "protecting our freedom." How often does the military actually fight to safeguard the rights of U.S. citizens in the United States?

      September 19, 2013 at 5:23 pm | Report abuse |
    • Drummer4ever1

      I agree, Unless they pay most of the raise forward. Fund small business, charity ect....

      September 20, 2013 at 6:02 am | Report abuse |
  34. mike lebrasseur


    September 19, 2013 at 4:08 pm | Report abuse |
  35. jim

    The show is way more than these clowns reading lines writen for them. The set, story ,clothes, etc, etc is what makes them, them. They get plenty. What about other things (movies ,ensorments ,etc ) they do because of the show, do the pay the company back ? The company put them in the soptlight, otherwise they would be what they were, nothing.

    September 19, 2013 at 3:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Paul

      Why, do you care what they make? You aren't paying for it. I don't see the two in the article making other movies and ensorments (whatever that is). Why do the (should be they) have to pay the company back. The company wasn't involved. Pay back means someone paid for something, and then you reimburse them. Did the company put them in the soplight (whatever that is)?

      September 19, 2013 at 4:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rob

      The Big Bang is awesome. They aren't just on CBS either the reruns are on all over the place. Also, the money the show makes is astronomical. They deserve more cash!

      September 19, 2013 at 4:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Fred Evil

      You lay awake at night dreaming of ways to suck a corporation's junk, don't you?

      September 19, 2013 at 7:56 pm | Report abuse |
  36. Rebecca

    Best show on TV hands down...Just remember folks if the stars are pulling in those high numbers just imagine what the network is making. I say let the actors make the money why should the company get rich off thier hard work. And it is hard work you would be surprised...ok maybe not 500,000 worth of hard work but it's all relative!

    September 19, 2013 at 3:11 pm | Report abuse |
    • pottershop2

      Jim, you sound like a talentless hack. If it was so easy "just reading lines", why aren't you doing it and making all that money. It is just ridiculous at the number of people who think getting paid for what you do is wrong. If the world really had so many altruistic people in it the world wouldn't be in half the trouble it is.

      September 19, 2013 at 5:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • Club Fighter X

      BEST show on TV? Wow, you must be smoking some serious crack, girl. It's not even anywhere close to being the best comedy on tv, let alone best show. It sucks.....bad. Almost as bad as your taste in TV shows.

      September 19, 2013 at 5:03 pm | Report abuse |
    • PrettyGood

      The show will work out well-Its a good show.

      September 19, 2013 at 9:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • jim

      pottershop2, didn't say it was easy or I could do it. I'm saying they are not worth $300k-$500k per show to read lines. That's a ton of money, they or you aren't worth it.

      September 20, 2013 at 12:47 am | Report abuse |
  37. webman6

    Good thing this show isn't on The Disney Channel. They'd get no raises and the show would be cancelled. Because that's just how The Disney Channel rolls. Even if they didn't ask for raises, after roughly 70 episodes or three years the show would be dropped anyway. Because that's how The Disney Channel rolls.

    September 19, 2013 at 2:41 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mr. Flibble

      Or until one of the lead actresses gets pregnant, then it gets cancelled. Because that's how The Disney Channel rolls.

      September 19, 2013 at 2:51 pm | Report abuse |
  38. Jimmie B

    This has been my favorite show since its 2nd season when my daughter turned me on to it. Give them all big raises to keep the show cooking right. Mayim, I've loved you since Blossom. While you're all great and funny actors, don't forget the writers who put the words in your mouths! And Kaley is so so cute!

    September 19, 2013 at 2:21 pm | Report abuse |
  39. Joe Regular

    That may seem like a lot, but it's less than a lot of people make just to throw a frigging ball around.

    September 19, 2013 at 2:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Billy

      True, but in many cases throwing a ball around makes a lot more money.. Just ask any big time NCAAF player 🙂

      September 19, 2013 at 3:12 pm | Report abuse |
  40. masterochi

    For every actor who makes a hundred thousand per episode, theres agents, managers, producers and network executives riding on their backs, taking millions.

    The SUITS are what is wrong with the TV production system. Well-connected "managers" steal a dollar for every dime they pay the talent.

    Its not the talent that makes TV shows so expensive, its all the MBA middle-management and other "hangers-on" who leech profits away from the entertainers.

    It is even worse in the music industry. Copyright law was re-written to benefit studios, executives and stockholders, making entertainment cost ten times more (seen the price for a movie lately?). The "Industry Organizations" are criminal enterprises who regularly bribe legislators for tax favors.

    Fix the system. Pay the actors, not the suits.

    September 19, 2013 at 2:09 pm | Report abuse |
  41. alpine queen

    The great thing about TBBT is that is was funny right from the start.

    September 19, 2013 at 2:03 pm | Report abuse |
  42. E

    Honestly, the show brings in enough ratings that I imagine they'll all get their raise. My one question is: why not negotiate as a group for the original gang of Penny, Howard, Leonard, Sheldon and Raj? I understand doing it separately, but they'd probably have more success that way. Still, I imagine they'll all get their raises and they have earned them.

    September 19, 2013 at 2:00 pm | Report abuse |
  43. T

    They, the Powers That Be, may balk at the big raises – remember New York Undercover when the stars demanded pay raises ? How about Dukes of Hazzard where the stars got replaced for a season by lookalikes ? And the stars of What's Happening – see-saw demands.....

    They may cancel the show after the seventh season to avoid keep paying out those fat checks to the TBBT stars.

    September 19, 2013 at 1:57 pm | Report abuse |
  44. JsJr

    Isn't David Letterman executive producer of the show? That being the case the cast can take a lesson from him in negotiating. I would tread cautiously however as it's been tested many times that a show survives with replacements. Two and A Half Men, a prime example. This show uses their cast smartly and the writing is still excellent. More than can be said for Two and A Half. Will the moms be revisiting soon?

    September 19, 2013 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |
  45. Merin

    Pay up folks! This show is awesome.

    September 19, 2013 at 1:46 pm | Report abuse |

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