CBS Sets Mega 3-Season Renewal for ‘The Big Bang Theory’

Big Bang Theory

Sheldon and Leonard will be geeking out on CBS for years to come thanks to a mega three-season renewal pact that CBS has struck with Warner Bros. TV for “The Big Bang Theory.”

Deal for primetime’s No. 1 comedy runs through the 2016-17 season, shoring up a cornerstone of CBS’ schedule. “Big Bang” has logged its highest ratings to date this season, its seventh, averaging 19.79 million viewers and a 6.1 rating/19 share in adults 18-49.

Warner Bros. TV is also in the midst of contract renewal negotiations with key cast members Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting and others.

“Big Bang” is the brightest star in Chuck Lorre’s constellation of CBS comedies. Lorre and Bill Prady co-created the series and exec produce with Steven Molaro, who has been showrunner for the past two seasons.

“Comedy is a big part of our schedule, and ‘The Big Bang Theory’ is the biggest comedy force on television,” said CBS Entertainment chair Nina Tassler.

“This multiyear deal further strengthens our network’s position for future seasons and marks another chapter in the great partnership CBS enjoys with Warner Bros. Television for delivering audiences the best in comedy. We’re proud to work with and showcase the incredible talents of Chuck Lorre, Steve Molaro and this amazing cast every week,” she said.

Although “Big Bang’s” license deal with CBS expired after this season, there was never any drama about Warner Bros. TV shopping the show to other networks or rumors about a standoff over license fee negotiations. The show has been wildly profitable for the studio in syndication since 2011.

Financial details of the renewal were unclear, but CBS is undoubtedly covering all production costs on the series as well as adding a premium on top given that “Big Bang” is such a ratings dynamo.

Lorre looks to be having a good year as CBS is expected to renew his other trio of comedies: “Two and a Half Men,” “Mike and Molly” and frosh entry “Mom,” starring Anna Faris and Allison Janney.

“Two and a Half Men” has been renewed on a year-to-year basis since the show rebooted in 2011 with Ashton Kutcher stepping in for original star Charlie Sheen. There was some question about whether this current season would be the last for “Men,” but all signs are pointing to the show returning for a 12th season.

Filed Under:

Want to read more articles like this one? SUBSCRIBE TO VARIETY TODAY.
Post A Comment 62

Leave a Reply

62 Comments

Comments are moderated. They may be edited for clarity and reprinting in whole or in part in Variety publications.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  1. vincent says:

    tbh, im getting a little tired of penny.

  2. Lorna says:

    BBT is extremely well written, and I don’t know how Jim Parsons could be any better.

    My God, he’s a magnificent actor. No sharks under this show UNLESS they write in a

    baby! Please, please CBS, don’t make this classic mistake. This is no place for high

    chairs and car seats.

    I agree that Kripke should recur more frequently, and I love the visiting professor idea.

    But you know who I really think should be brought back in? Toby, Sheldon’s fake

    cousin. That kid was brilliant! He was introduced as a teaching assistant, so he could

    quite realistically still be hanging around the university. I don’t feel the writers getting

    tired at all. They can maintain the quality quotient. The bank of talent is just too great,

    on both sides of the camera.

  3. Reply to American Original:Yes, the lead character’s names were intended as a tribute to Sheldon Leonard. Such a talent!

  4. American Original says:

    Does anyone know if the characters Sheldon and Leonard were named after the actor/director Sheldon Leonard?

  5. My favorite part of Big Bang: Leonards eyebrows/forehead. the look he can create when someone does something dumb is incredible. To me, Leonard is THE key cast member. He is the straight man of the group, the Abbot of Abbot and Costello. He may not get the laughs himself, because his job is to set everyone else up to get them.

  6. I agree with Mark. I didn’t watch the show until a little while ago, having given up on ‘sit coms’ after Seinfeld, but got seriously hooked on Big Bang. I am a nerd/geek myself (BS in Microbiology) and spend most of my life working on/with computers. I can Identify with each of the characters on the show-they are either me or a friend.

    I have gotten so that I cannot stand ‘reality’ shows, which are really semi-scripted (read about how they make Duck Dynasty) and are no longer either educational or funny, just money makers for those few involved.

    I do agree that they have to be careful to void over-playing the same story lines too much. Raj needs to move on from his selective mutism, and they need to add a couple of new characters as ‘short-term’ guest stars (like a half-year contract) as say visiting professors at college. When you think of it, visiting professors would be a great way to introduce new characters that can then disappear gracefully to be replaced with another, with different, quirky personalities. John Lithgow would be perfect for this. They do not need to be established stars, I just used John as an example of what could be done. Think what a chemist could do to the group! Labs with explosions, smoke, etc.

    And they need to answer one big question on the show: How did ‘OCD’ Sheldon from conservative Texas develop such an international taste for exotic foods, like Chinese, Thai, etc? Where is the BBQ that should be his ‘mothers milk’? Where is the Chicken Fried steak?

    • Lorna says:

      Raj’s selective mutism is gone. I agree with you; it needed to go. Same with the constant Raj + Howard gay shtick. Hope we’ve seen the last of that.

  7. Rick says:

    I disagree! One of the funniest shows on the planet and it beats the brain dead sit-coms and animated old as the hills Fox retreads like the Simpsons hands down. I had never watched Big Ban series during the 6 seasons it was on, then caught a couple of shows from this season and immediately went out and bought Seasons 1-6 on DVD. Worth every penny!

  8. Mark says:

    This is one of the worst shows to date! I can’t stand it anymore. It was funny at first, but now it is nothing more than Sheldon’s incessant complaining, Howard’s anti-semitic jokes, Leonard’s whining about the state of his life (that no one cares about – look at his friends. the dude has NO self-respect) and Kuth’s ethnic one-liners. It just DOESN’T work anymore because we’ve listened to it for so long and it is repetitive and now we need to listen to it for three more years? The two worse points is that this show perpetuates stereotypes about geek culture that are absolutely false; but the American public of course will believe them. Why not? It also is perpetuating very negative stereotypes about women, which is even WORSE. Oh, and if you’re going to have a show that includes science and use a science team for the research on those facts – stop being lazy and get your fats straight. It is really irritating when my parents watch this show and to overhear this show get its physics wrong!

    • Roberto Sprotti says:

      I agree totally! A very smart man once said that after five seasons sit-com actors begin to do caricatures of themselves. I believe that was Carl Reiner or Sheldon Leonard who said that. Anyhow, that has happened here. Sheldon is no longer the awkward genius geek, he is a bothersome narcissist. Leonard’s character has lost all his flavor and the new cast members add very little to the mix that is worthwhile. Lucille Ball ruled with an iron fist and kept that show straight despite the flack amongst the cast. Big Bang needs to crack down on things and get back to the show as it first aired. The innocence of the interplay of these characters during the first few seasons has turned to one-liner set-ups and ethnic slurs. It’s sad because they had a good thing going. But, like Two and Half Men, the show will go on until it consumes itself or until it gets a revamp (or both). Once again, so sad!

    • Jace Barnett says:

      I hate it when lazy people can’t get their fats straight. It’s no wonder they got themselves in this predicament.

    • Kyle says:

      If you have such a problem with the show, there is one simple solution. And you don’t even have to understand physics either. DO NOT WATCH THE SHOW. People always complain about this and that about certain shows. It’s been on for 7 seasons, if it was funny at first but not anymore why do you continue to watch something you have described as one of the worst shows to date? Obviouly it isn’t one of the worst shows to date, otherwise it wouldn’t have been on for 7 seasons nor would it have signed a new 3 season deal. So how about stop complaining, stop watching and let everybody who does enjoy the show look forward to watching another 3 seasons and hopefully more beyond that.

  9. Big Bang Theory is the BEST comedy show EVER!!! I hope it NEVER goes off the air!!!

  10. jean says:

    One of the Best Shows on TV with brilliant writers. This is one of the few shows we watch anymore since there are so many so called “reality” shows that consist of no
    talented actors and no writers. If nit weren’t for Big Bang Theory and a FEW others, there’d be no need for anything but netflix.

  11. Three more seasons? Isn’t the show already past its prime?

    • I don’t agree at all… there are so many open story lines to be explored, not to mention the show is hysterical. If you don’t like it anymore, then don’t watch! I’m thrilled they are signing on for 3 more years. Thursday is my fav tv night because of Big Bang.

  12. Evertt Faubsnaubs says:

    Penny, knock knock knock, Penny, knock knock knock, Penny, knock knock knock, Penny…..

  13. olive says:

    I”m glad it’s continuing, but I wish they’d get rid of Bernadette, she’s the reason Howard’s character has gotten SO boring, and I wish they’d stick to more how it was in the first 3 years. Howard and Raj together were hilarious. Penny dating different guys and the way Leonard reacted was funny, now he just seems to be whiny… I used to crack up every episode, now it seems to be so boring, may one chuckle per episode.. It seems they’re really ‘dulling down’ the geek stuff, which was the reason I liked it, and having a bunch of couples makes for very boring TV, it’s too ordinary now…PLEASE GIVE US BACK OUR GEEKS!!!

  14. Timbo says:

    Good television shows know when to call it quits. Watching How I met Your Mother circle the drain this season has been painful. 2.5 Men and TBBT need to wind themselves down, otherwise they’ll travel the same painful path as HIMYM and become just another syndicated show that ended weakly.

  15. YES – YES – YES – SMART MOVE- LOVE THIS SHOW !

  16. aiddison says:

    Oh dear lord, why. This show needs to go.

  17. Judy S. says:

    TBBT is one of my two favorite shows. I’m really glad it will continue to cheer up my evenings!

  18. Teagan says:

    Huge mistake. Even now the show’s not funny any more. I can’t imagine they have many ideas left at this point, let alone 3 seasons down the road.

  19. Joe Orsini says:

    They will renew crap shows but not give other comedies a chance to grow. I am thinking The New Adventures of Old Christine and Gary Unmarried. I liked those shows a lot and thought Gary Unmarried was pretty good. TBBT is the only one mentioned here I really watch. TAAHM died a couple of seasons before Charlie did, Mike and Molly is just kind of boring for me, and I have tried to watch that Mom show but cannot get into it at all.

  20. Gina LeFave says:

    Can’t wait until season three starts I love this show

  21. Kenny Cook says:

    Frosh entry

  22. Jim Sebastiani says:

    Comedy writing at its laziest. Period.

  23. Lily says:

    If they don’t come back I won’t go back to watching :(

  24. Andy Seamans says:

    Love Big Bang Theory but they need to put Two and a Half Men out of it’s misery.

  25. Nora E. says:

    Great show. Bazinga!!!

  26. Tom Burgess says:

    The bad news: “Mike and Molly” is coming back also.

  27. Quit while your ahead, with a good ending says:

    When your fan base is loyal enough to watch you jump sharks for three more seasons, milk away!

    • comedyfan says:

      Exactly, BBT’s fan base likes mediocre comedy anyway so the show could be on for a very long time, they’ll definitely milk it.

  28. tammy says:

    it’s a great show . the humor is awesome. thanks for the laughs and smiles.

  29. Michael Maze says:

    I just hope it gets better again. This past season has tried to be too cute and the clever edge is missing. I love the show but if you watch a few repeats from a few years ago then watch some of the ones from this season and last, the drop in quality is obvious.

  30. Georgie France says:

    big bang is the best show out there educate yourself and get a sense of humor it is show popular not only in the US but has a massive fan base in the UK

  31. ThomT says:

    The irony here is that CBS is also looking to schedule Thursday night football. This would mean that “Big Bang” will either start the season late, split their season, be pre-empted a lot or be moved (maybe back to Monday where it started or to start a new comedy block on another night). The three year lock looks to be CBS’s guaranteed that Lorre won’t jump ship and take America’s number one comedy elsewhere once the final decision has been made as to how Thursday night will be scheduled and what will ultimately happen to “Big Bang”.

    • Roberto Sprotti says:

      Good idea for an episode: Penny gets a gig as an on-the-field/in-the-locker-room reporter for Thursday Night Football and invites “the gang” to her first game. Bring on a couple of NFL stars in cameos and have Sheldon, the football expert, devise the winning play. Howard hooks up with a cheerleader and Bernadette leaves him. Raj gets his dad to buy the team for him. Amy Farrah Fowler gets laid by a gigantic lineman and dumps Sheldon who doesn’t care because during the game a defensive formation brings on a physics epiphany cluing him to the proof of string theory and the answer to life, the universe, and everything. Penny gets fired and everything returns to normal without Bernadette and Amy Farrah Fowler.

    • Lewis B says:

      Why is it that Football and other sports have to be aired on NBC, CBS, ABC? I thought that was why they created ESPN and other sports networks? Seems like every time I try to tune in my local and national news on a Saturday or Sunday it is either football, baseball or (uggggghhh) tennis!!

      • juliethejarhead says:

        Sports programming is now the mainstay of network television. It’s the only programming that people regularly watch live. Anything else — sit coms, made-for-TV movies, dramas — are more frequently recorded. With the possible exception of taken shows such as AMERICAN IDOL and DANCING WITH THE (so-called) STARS, there’s no compelling reason to watch a TV program live.

  32. krystamae says:

    They are risking it. Two years, you have an option for more but cementing a 3 yr deal with no way out. Its dangerous because it can overstay its welcome. Many shows have overstayed and it could happen for TBBT too. I’m not thrilled but whatever. And TAAHM…ARE YOU FRICKEN kidding me??? Die show, DIE!

  33. E.V. says:

    The first 2 will be filler crap and the 3rd will be the best.

  34. Jess says:

    How nice must it be to hear that you’ll actually be signing a (3) year work contract, with incredible pay, in Hollywood no less. What a great way to start off the new year. Go BBT!

  35. Vlad says:

    Bazoopy!

  36. Marchell says:

    I like this show it is funny.

  37. Tina says:

    This is the worst show.

    • Michael Maze says:

      You’re joking right, Tina? Tell us why it’s “The worst show.” It’s not enough to just say it, explain yourself. I won’t wait.

    • Jason says:

      Tina, 20 million people disagree, but that is what is great about TV. You don’t have to watch it if you don’t like it.

      • Timbo says:

        Is One Direction the best musical group out there? Afterall, their album was a best seller. Popularity does not equate to quality.

    • Noah says:

      You’re thinking of that crap The Crazy Ones.

  38. Noah says:

    ‘as CBS is looking to renew his other trio of comedies’. And maybe, not likely, but maybe he’ll renew those for three more seasons too.

  39. Elise Jerrdan says:

    Reblogged this on the adventures of louiselaine and commented:
    We’ll seeing more of Sheldon and Leonard! For three more seasons at least.

More TV News from Variety

Loading