Explosive Ratings Gain ‘Big Bang Theory’ Three More Seasons
CBS has announced that it’s renewing the hit comedy The Big Bang Theory for three more years, extending through the 2016-2017 season. Fans of television’s top rated comedy about smart-but-awkward physicists who learn the ways of life from their hot friend living in the apartment across the hall are guaranteed three more seasons of laughs.
Renewing a show for three seasons in one go is uncommon, but not hugely surprising given the ratings that The Big Bang Theory has gotten over the course of its seven seasons. The show has been TV’s biggest comedy in terms of viewers since the 2010-2011 season and is currently the highest rated, non-sports program for adults between the ages of 18 and 49. For the current seventh season, the show gained an average of 19.79 million viewers.
The show was created by Chuck Lorre, who is also responsible for popular primetime comedies Two and a Half Men, Mom, and Mike and Molly. It stars Johnny Galecki, Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting, Simon Helberg, Kunal Nayyar, Mayim Bialik, and Melissa Rauch.
“Comedy is a big part of our schedule, and The Big Bang Theory is the biggest comedy force on television,” said Nina Tassler, the chair of CBS Entertainment. “This multi-year 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.”
The show has also received critical acclaim. Jim Parsons has won three Emmy awards for “Outstanding Lead Actor in a Comedy Series” for his portrayal of Sheldon Cooper, the eccentric and socially awkward physicist who works at Caltech and spends his spare time engaging in nerdy activities like playing video games, reading comic books, and hopelessly lusting after Penny, the beautiful aspiring actress who lives across the hall. The series has also received several People’s Choice Awards.
The show has a lukewarm rating on Metacritic, scoring a 57 and getting mostly mixed reviews from critics. But it isn’t critics who decide how much a show is worth. If fans continue to love the show, the advertising dollars will keep pouring in.
This is the second three-year deal in a row that CBS has cut for Big Bang Theory. The network is making a big bet that the show can maintain its hit status for ten seasons. CBS didn’t reveal the financial details, but industry executives who spoke to the New York Times estimated that the network pays about $5 million an episode. The show, which is owned by Warner Bros., is in syndication on TBS where it also receives high ratings.
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