‘Big Bang Theory’: Production to Resume as Simon Helberg, Kunal Nayyar Set New Deals

Simon Helberg Kunal Nayyar Big Bang

Fans of CBS’ “The Big Bang Theory” can sleep a little better tonight.

Warner Bros. TV has confirmed that the sitcom will resume production now that contract negotiations for Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar have been finalized.

“Production on season eight of ‘The Big Bang’ Theory will begin Wednesday, August 6, with contract negotiations now having been concluded,” Warners said in a statement.

The deals with Helberg and Nayyar bring an end to the behind-the-scenes contract drama that enveloped the nation’s top-rated sitcom. With key cast members coming up for contract negotiations, the stars held out for megabucks paydays in light of the windfall profits the show has generated in syndication.

On Monday, stars Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco sealed new three-season deals that will pay them about $1 million per episode, plus increased backend points and other perks. Helberg and Nayyar will see their paydays jump to the mid six-figure range, from around $100,000 per episode in recent years.

Sources said Helberg and Nayyar negotiated jointly through a lawyer who pushed hard for salary parity with the other trio. But during the past 48 hours the studio made a take-it-or-leave-it offer and a deadline of 3 p.m. PT today. The actors’ rep was advised that their characters would be written out of the series if a deal could not be reached.

Sources said it was not just the studio playing hardball. Exec producers Chuck Lorre and Steven Molaro were so frustrated by the prolonged negotiations that they were in the process of preparing a script that did not involve Helberg or Nayyar’s characters in order to move forward with the first table read of the season.

The contract strife forced the studio to delay the start of production, which had been set for July 30. “Big Bang” is expected to complete its 24-episode order for its eighth season, despite the lost week.

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  1. r. cutts says:

    This story is from last year (look at the date).

  2. Daniel says:

    How you would write them out is beyond me. Who are we kidding here?

  3. don ryno says:

    this is the same story giving last year it is bullshit to rehash it again as a new story, very lazy writing and publication to relist it again in 2015….

    • Joyce says:

      I always look for dates of TV shows, docs and articles like this one. Repeating a 2014 story of cast negotiations is just cheap filler.

  4. Aneishahamp says:

    They show pay Helberg and Nayyar 1million an episode just like the other original cast, they are a great assets to the company and this is why products don’t last and why show end and shows become dull because, money make people unfair and cause them not to see the truth. If Big Bang lost any of their cast it will cause the show fail, that cast has a wonderful chemistry why mess it up, pay the people good and keep them happy so all of you can keep getting paid. Each of that cast compliment the other they could not have picked a better cast or group of people to work together( the hand can’t move without the fingers, get real Big Bang and pay them their money 1million the day you get rid of that cast cancel the show cause it won’t be the same, you have a good thing going keep it up ( why change)

  5. that’s just vile. jeez. Kaley Cuoco is easily replaceable. there are so many of her ilk in Hollywood. Also probably true of Simon and Kunal, though

  6. Anish says:

    i do agree…..Helberg and Nayyar should get atleast $500,000 Per Episode…this is flatout ridiculous decision by the The Big Bang Theory Studio…..if Raj and Howard are not there then the show will loose its popularity and also i am sure it won’t be in the top 10 TV Shows anymore….both of them deserve a share too……if both of them are gone….then i won’t watch the big bang theory anymore!!!

  7. James Bom says:

    The show would crash and fail without Raj and Howard. They are more interesting than the ‘main trio’ and if they got rid of them, that would ruin Amy, Bernadette and the red-hair girl’s character’s too which would break the ensemble. That’s like taking out characters from ‘Friends’ and that would have been the end of that show too. Glad they reached a deal though, but the fact they threatened that shows how uncaring those producers are.

  8. laurie says:

    honestly I hope they got a good chunk of cash. the five of them have been there since the start they all contribute a great deal to the success of that show. Simon helberg and melissa are so good together. also the the scavenger hunt episode with howard and amy . honestly was one of the funniest episodes. its sad that management would write them out. they have been loyal to the show

  9. kiplangat cheruiyot says:

    simon and nayyar deserve sthng closer to the other three. infact i find them the best after jim parsons

  10. Jaye says:

    “Helberg and Nayyar will see their paydays jump to the mid six-figure range, from around $100,000 per episode in recent years.” What do you call $100,000?

  11. Mutleyx says:

    So sick of everyone saying how much TBBT makes the network. Yeah, coz the whole network has zero running costs….having to cover other such things like…err..tanked shows, or the news sector (because journalists travel chasing stories for free you know). I still think the cast are thieving b*$?!*rds, but the amount the show makes goes into supporting the whole network???the actors will get more benefits again from merchandise…$1m an episode is a joke. Most the lines on the show is laughter reel anyway.
    I love TBBT, but the laughter reel is well overused and the cast are NOT worth that per episode.

    • Paul says:

      I have been to 2 tapings of TBBT, it isn’t a laughter reel, it is taped in front of a live studio audience.

    • lilkunta reply TO mutleyx says:

      mutleyx : Warner Bros is paying these salaries. CBS licenses the show from WB. So CBS others costs aren’t WB problem.

    • lilkunta reply to mutleyx says:

      why is the cast thieves ?
      they are just doing what 2.5men, frasier, friends, seinfeld, mad about you cast all did.

  12. Crystal says:

    They deserve the same pay as the other 3. They are just as important to the show in my opinion. I think the other 3 should have stuck with them in their contract negotiations like the Friends cast. So all 5 could get the big payday.

    • Mary says:

      I agree that they derseve the same pay. I think there funnier than Penny and Lenard! Sheldon and Amy are the funniest!! Chuck Lorre, pull your head out of your *** and pay them all the same. Lenard and Penny could never get another job! I rather see them go!! Raj and Howard are great!

      • Ann says:

        Mary, you speaks my mind! I just don’t see that Leonard and penny are funny at all. I love these 2 guys. I think they have a talent not just a fame.

  13. The show would not be the same without Helberg and Nayyar either. They should be paid the same.

  14. without jim parson it wood not be the same show the big 5 are great the two girls I could leave out but never miss an episoide hope they can keep it fresh we even watch reruns . I like the comic book store guy in a minor part.

  15. Kunal Nayyar and Simon Helberg….there is no one who could replace them…not the way they do it, You need all the original cast to make the show what it is, If not, then the ratings will go down,

  16. gili121181Gili says:

    The whole payment system is stupid. I think an actor should get paid based on how funny he is in the show. i.e. – Johnny Galecki and Kaley Cuoco should get paid the least amount of money.

    Let the audience vote who is the funniest cast member, and pay accordingly. OK, Kaley Cuoco is a beautiful blond, i get that. People what the show becuase of ther, but who the hell watches the show because of Johnny Galecki??

    • kat says:

      based on how funny they are??? that is so impractical. firstly some characters are written to be funnier than others, you can’t just have funny, funny, funny, all of the time they need to have depth and more than one dimension. secondly, who gets to decide how funny an actor is? the people who both watch the show and know how to vote online on shitty websites and are bothered to? wow you think someone like you is important enough to decide on an actors future? that’s not how it works, and actors will all begin to become the same typecast people because it will become the sort of acting which is in demand at a particular time again leading a lack of diversity in what is available to watch. finally i watch the show because of Johnny Galecki so obviously your flimsy point is invalid because your whole argument was based upon this one imbecile misconception.

  17. J.P. Moser says:

    Considering that the exec producer Lorre is himself Jewish like the multi-talented Simon, I highly doubt that it involves cultural diversity. More likely, it’s simply that they are co-stars, and not stars….: )

  18. Delia Lazo says:

    These two men and their heritage is the main reason I enjoyed watching this show and it’s reruns. Keep up the good work everybody.

  19. Sherri says:

    I don’t see why Helberg and Nayyar are not being paid as much as the other three; they are just as much a part of the original “gang” as Parsons, Galecki, and Cuoco. In fact, I find it odd that the two characters who bring any sort of cultural diversity to the show are not being paid as much as the other three. It might just be a coincidence but it’s a shame all the same.

  20. the show jumped the shark and lost all it’s heat last season, lets see if it gets it back this season…
    hoffman said the audience the less it knows of you, the better they can see you thru your performance, last season all I saw was a married women trying to act like she was single and thats kaley’s fault…

  21. tom says:

    Glad they are staying. Their characters carry the show. Once BBT fizzles out, maybe they could have their own spinoff. Howard is Da Man.

  22. Someone give Chrissy (Suzanne Somers) the 150k per episode salary retroactively that she asked for – and got fired for – years ago on Three’s Company! Now, it seems like a bargain :)

  23. Andrew says:

    Is it possible to write GREED without using all caps? Let’s see. GREED. GREED. Hmm. GREED. Guess it isn’t.

  24. Tracy says:

    So glad the show is clean and entertaining. I have all seasons on dvd along with criminal minds and supernatural

  25. Scott says:

    I say get all you can while you can, the whole cast of Friends got $1 M per episode years ago and I think The Big Bang Theory is funnier.

  26. Caz says:

    Whilst I am in the ‘1 million per ep is pure greed’ group. Another part of me thinks well y shouldn’t they. The studio will be making Much MUCH more than that so y shouldn’t a bigger chunk of the profits go to the people that actually makes the words on paper come to life. However on the other hand. I don’t think it’s fair that only 3 of them are getting this rate. Raj and Howard are just as central characters as the Sheldon Leonard and penny are. It’s not very fair that these 2 are getting half the pay. Ovo this is just my own speculation/opinion here. But it will cause tension and friction between the actors. Not good.

    • lilkunta reply to caz says:

      caz : is it greed that Charlie sheen got 1.5mill an ep ?

      that ashton gets 1mill an ep now ?

      is it greed that friends(also from WB studios), mad about you, , frasier all got 1mill?
      seinfeld and desperate housewives got 600k…is it greed ?

      this may the the cast’s career peak so they do need to get their slice since the show earns billions in reruns and streaming and overseas.

    • austinangela says:

      Actually, it is fair. Actor salaries have a lot to do with seniority, as it were, or how long you’ve been successful in the business. Although Jim Parsons hasn’t been in a lot of popular shows, his character is essential to the show’s story. Kaley and Johnny have both been in highly-popular shows before (8 Simple Rules and Roseanne, respectively), so their salaries match the fan base they bring to the table.

      To the people who are complaining about how much these stars make, remember just that: they are stars. They are banking the same amount ($24 million) what award-winning films stars make for just one film. And none of it directly costs you one thin dime.

      Congrats on your long-awaited success, actors!

      • lilkunta reply to austinAngela says:

        not all film stars earn $24mill per film! in fact, plase name the stars that do.
        and movies are what 3 mo of the year ?
        tv shows are 10hrs (sometimes longer) a day from august- april.

  27. Dw Dunphy says:

    Lorre needs to be careful. Granting your stars an instant windfall didn’t serve him particularly well with Two and a Half Men.

    • Someone says:

      Bernadette is my favorite character … if Howard goes she might also which is sad , shes the best and I like her sweet voice and how she gets angry xDD , and what about howards mom … they all need to get more money not just a part of them ugh

    • Scott says:

      But Charlie Sheen is a drug addicted, drunk asshole.

  28. R.J. says:

    I think Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar should also be paid a million as well. They are just as funny and have roughly the same amount of air time.

  29. K. Dale Frazier says:

    People should READ the story; NOT just the Headlines …. These two will receive MID six figure incomes or $500,000 -$750,000 each per episode …
    As much as I like and enjoy this program ; NO ONE is worth $500,00 or a MILLION Bucks an episode for ANY TV Program … plain and simple …
    Why do people need to be so GREEDY ?

    • bbock says:

      Why not? The issue is how much money the show generates. The show is a money machine in syndication and probably will be for another decade. Why shouldn’t the on-screen talent benefit from this? They were a large part of creating endearing characters that people tune in daily to see.

  30. Tom says:

    More power to them! Way to go guys!

  31. mariapia annarilli says:

    Soooo Raj and and Howard r only going to see 100k/episode while the rest tk 1mill???? That blows! They mk the show too!

    • Al says:

      No 100 grand/episode was their previous pay. Now it’s around 500 grand per episode. I totally agree those 2 are the show. Them and sheldon. Those 3 are the most interesting characters. The whole Leonard and Penny thing is way too played out and they’re boring. I legit don’t care what happens to them.

    • Mark Strawn says:

      they were making 100k per episode. they are going up to the mid 6 figure range which means around 500k

      • IMO, Leonard is the key. It’s harder to find a funny straight man than a ‘comic’, which is Sheldon. Remember Abbot and Costello? Straight man Abbot got 60%, while Lou Costello got 40%.

        To me, Leonard’s eyebrow and forehead action is priceless!

  32. Shiree says:

    I love this program but talk about GREED!!!! $1m per episode???? That’s ridiculous!!!

    • bbock says:

      It’s not money out of YOUR pocket. The show makes bank in syndication. You’d rather Warner Brothers executives got it all instead?

  33. Nanci D says:

    I like the show a lot, but really!

  34. BarbaraBolullo says:

    so glad they are coming back

  35. Alan in TX says:

    Whew I’m relieved that they’ll be making so much. Good to know the rich’ll get richer. I’ve been unemployed since March… I’d love to be getting a paycheck. Although what they make per episode is more than I’ll see in my lifetime. They can stop whining now.

    • erik says:

      Well get a talent, sacrifice your time, and work a 16 hour work day like they do and maybe you will be something. Instead of a whiner.

    • Walter White says:

      Nicely put. I can only dream of earning a mansion in 44 minutes.

      • Mr. Peabody says:

        At lilkuta: no way taxes are 50%. Try less than 40% after deductions etc. – combining state and local. And some of those folks you mentioned are actually paid by the studio already.

      • lilkunta reply TO dar s says:

        @ Dar S : how much did you get paid as an extra? Did you get to meet the cast or were you separated from them ?

        I wonder how much does the technical team(light team, grip, makeup, editors) earn ?

      • lilkunta reply towalter white says:

        517EST: walter actually they cant buy a mansion with 1 ep’s salary. remember taxes takes 50% IMMEDIATELY and then they have to ay agents manages accountants stylists makeup artists housekeepers house managers gardeners drivers and more.

      • Dar S. says:

        Years ago I used to work as an extra on the side, just for fun. The amount of work that goes into making one episode is staggering. 12 to 16 hour days, 5, sometimes 6 days a week not including editing and other technical stuff and it’s all pared down to 22 minutes. Yes, they make a lot of money, but we are the ones creating the demand. Don’t like it, then stop watching. Btw: what Kunal and Simeon make is about right, their characters are secondary. The tag line for the show is 2 nerdy guys who live across the hall from an attractive young woman who teaches them there is more to life than being geeks.

      • Bee says:

        It takes way more than 44 minutes to produce a 44 minute show.

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