Big Bang Theory Leads Are Next to Seek Bigger Paydays, as Co-Stars Score Salary Bumps

Big Bang Theory Salary TalksThree years after famously banding together Friends-like at the negotiations table, The Big Bang Theory‘s Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco and Johnny Galecki are poised for an encore, with their current deals expiring in the spring at the end of the show’s seventh season. But how high will their new paydays go?

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With the entire ensemble’s contracts — as well as the CBS hitcom’s license fee — up for renewal at season’s end, thus far Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch (aka Amy and Bernadette) have inked new deals, our sister site Deadline reports, putting their per-episode paychecks at around $60,000 (up from $20,000-30,000).

That leaves Team Parsons/Cuoco/Galecki, as well as costars Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar, with negotiations still ahead of them. While Helberg and Nayyar (currently at $125 and $75K, respectively) again negotiate as a unit, the three leads will unite to seek, reportedly, north of $500,000 per episode (versus the $300K they’re currently pulling).

It’s worth noting that Big Bang ranks as TV’s most-watched and highest-rated comedy. It’s also a syndication powerhouse.

RELATED | Big Bang Theory Exclusive: Christine Baranski to Return as Leonard’s Mom

Because you were wondering: Per a recent TV Guide Magazine report, TV’s highest paid drama actor is NCIS‘ Mark Harmon (at $525,000 per, plus points from the back end), while Two and a Half Men‘s Ashton Kutcher collects comedy’s biggest paycheck, getting by on $750K per episode.

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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  1. Boiler says:

    A little extravagant dont you think? Maybe Big Bang makes tons but use some of the extra for other scripted shows

    • Belle says:

      I just wish all TV and Movie stars would take pay cuts (or at least minimal pay increases like normal people 3%-5% a year) and be thankful for a job…these excessive amounts of money PER episode for the major players (i.e. Parsons, Cuoco, Galecki, Kutcher, Harmon, etal) are more than many people see in their lifetime :( Sad to see people all around us suffering, and the rich and famous just keep getting more rich and more famous. I know they work 12-14 hour days while filming, but they also get ample time off during the season and then summer hiatus.

      • Damien says:

        Maybe they’re sick of making the network huge amounts of money, of which they only see a tiny percentage…

      • Yanta says:

        Absolutely. Too few people are making so much money, while millions are homeless and suffering. Many live on less than $1.00 per DAY. $500,000 per episode just shows how greedy and vain these people have become.

        • jwilson08 says:

          Same old communist line, give us YOUR money so we do not have to work. Those actors make millions because their bosses make BILLIONS, they are worth every penny the earn.

        • barry says:

          you sound just like a liberal, let them make what they can make while they can

        • If you make a product that people want, do you deserve to be paid for it? If you provide a service that people want, do you deserve to be paid for it? That is the essence of capitalism. To say I don’t deserve to be paid what the market bears for my product or service is to give me a disincentive to be productive. Every person in every field should strive to be the BEST. Enough of mediocrity. They deserve to be paid top-dollar because they are the TOP rated comedy on TV. People watch, so the show makes money. Tons of good shows (The Crazy Ones) get canceled because not enough people watch.

        • reallypissed says:

          This is America. You’re obviously a socialist were everyone is equally poor.

        • Sean says:

          They have the ability to make that money because of people like us. It is simple really. Advertisers are what fuels this. Advertisers are willing to pay boat loads of money because when they pitch their product on this show, their sales go up. It goes up because we see what we like and go out and buy it. This puts more money in to the pockets of the company and they are willing to spend more money then their competitors to put a commercial on their show. It is simple supply and demand. It is the same thing with movie stars. If actor x is in the movie, more people go and see it, so the industry is willing to pay more. If you think it is so awful, do not watch the show or movie or whatever you think is so evil. If enough people feel the way you do, then their salaries come down. Do not begrudge them though for making the money that they can while they can. It is not their fault that people are living on a dollar a day.

        • says:

          The comments about Yanta’s being a socialist or communist are, of course ridiculous. A real anti-capitalist would point out that even with these huge salaries, the behind-the-scenes major corporation capitalists are still making money from the labor of those actors. I would be happy to criticize the huge corporations that make their billions first — if you really care about the very poor, which we should do, we should focus on how big government actually helps big business, even though big business likes to complain about big government.

        • brad21 says:

          Many homeless people are homeless because they want to be. Stop begging for money and buying booze and cigs. Get a job!!!!!

      • Craig Ewing says:

        They should get as much as they can, to many stars die broke, the networks makes tons of money with world wide exsposer and reruns

      • Bradn says:

        Yeah, the fact that so many celebrities create/donate to huge charities and give to those less fortunate has no bearing for discussion at all. They are all just a bunch of greedy people we need to shame and be general asshats to, they’re only human, but who cares!!

        • sandi says:

          They are worth the money! The show will run for years in reruns. They may well decide to donate or give time to charities. If they settle for less money, that dies not mean The network will give a dime/dime more to those in need! In case you didn’t catch the sarcasm in the last answer, I hope you’ll understand this. Stars quite often deserve lots of money. Certainly these three do.

      • karen eggers says:


      • Ron H says:

        Good for them!!! Make all you can!!! Those people that cry oh it’s a shame they make that much money! I think they are no different then pro athletes! When you reach the top you should get paid for it! The networks sure make a bundle! Do I wish it was me? Sure do!!!!! And all these whiners….if the tables were turned how fast they would change their minds!!!! Remember there are only three types of people people that can count and people that can’t!

      • patricia says:

        When people study a craft and make it a profession the most talented people will tend to earn more than others. It isn’t that everyone can’t it is that those who work hard to accomplish things in life reap more bounty from their hard labor. Congrads to the cast of “The Big Bang Theory” for putting on such a great and enjoyable show that entertains billions every week. Your work has not gone un-noticed. Think about all the child actors in the days of early TV. Their contracts were not worth much but syndicators made millions on the reruns and likeness of the charactors for years while the actors really got nothing past their contracts. Actors are independent contractors. All they have is their work which can be exploited.

      • Donn Nieder says:

        Who cares how much they make? My circumstances and how much money I make are not dependent on how much some actor makes. They’re not taking anything from me and they help keep the economy afloat when they spend money on all the silly things actors spend their money on. $500K an episode and beyond! Go for it, guys.

      • Jackson says:

        The network is going to make a ton of money off of this show. Why shouldn’t the actors get their share of the profits?

        Who do you think should keep the bulk of the profits from this show? If the actors take cuts, that means the network makes more. Why are you ok with that?????

      • T.C. says:

        If the actors didn’t get a larger portion of the shows profits, the producers, directors and writers would make even more. Is that fair? If you are a hit show, it may be he only one you ever have. Take the money and run!

        • linda wassberg says:

          Ok I agree. if the producers and everyone else is getting more money then the actors who MAKE the show should also get more!! they do deserve it!

      • That’s a socialist idea Belle. You must be a progressive Democrat.

        • says:

          And you must be someone who deals with arguments by just slapping a simplistic label on someone so that you can dismiss their argument without addressing it.

      • J. says:

        I would agree if the reductions were across the board…Why should the actors take less when the production company and the network make more? They deserve their fair share.

      • Justin says:

        Proposal: All TV and movie stars should take a pay cut and be thankful they have work. Reasoning: They make more per episode than many make in a lifetime.


        Do you make more than I do? If so, do you mind taking a pay cut, and sending it over to me. Thanks.

      • norcaltc says:

        Actors deserve whatever they can get. Hit shows make producers big bucks. Why shouldn’t the actors benefit. Some actors never have a hit show in their entire career. If you are lucky enough to get one you need to bank as much money as possible. That gig might be your last money making show. Many actors get typecased (sic?) while on these shows and never act again.
        That being said, I believe that all the people from producers, directors, actors and behind the scenes staff should benefit from these hit shows. Share the wealth.

      • Please…. there are others that also work a 12-14 hr work day and do something far more dangerous than acting! Ever work in a mine, above or below ground? What about in an oil field? A plant associated with a mining company? I do.. its no joke. It’s hard work, u can’t make a mistake and when/if u do, there isn’t a, “Cut! Do it again”. Ur screwed, to put it mildly.

      • Jim says:

        Your so right!

      • Sleeb says:

        To be most fair, calculate salary increases AND reductions according to the success of the series with fair compensation for the show’s popularity up to this point in time. If the show continues to be popular, everyone wins. If popularity suffers, their salary and adv. sells will reflect that fact. Maybe that strategy will keep everyone on their toes. I think they do that with regular jobs too. YMMV.

    • J says:

      As long as people are willing to watch the shows the stars will continue to make the money. If you want this to change you either need to stop watching the shows or take the step of boycotting all shows where the actor/actress makes more than a certain amount per year. Much the same action needs to be taken in response to politicians; constituents have a great deal of power and influence if only they would actually participate in the government system and vote out those that don’t properly serve their constituency. I think blue collar workers should make just as much as white collar, but the change will never occur so long as people are willing to turn a blind eye to the people that actually do the work that makes this country great. We are a nation of sad and pathetic people willing to give up everything in order to be supported by a government that was never meant to support anyone, but only created to protect our rights of life, property, and liberty.

      • Larry says:

        That’s not correct. Read the Preamble to the Constitution. There’s that sentence regarding governmental responsibilities that reads: “promote the general welfare.”

      • Yanta says:

        rofl. Governments don’t exist to support the welfare of the people. The people exist to support the welfare of the rich and famous. Governments get selected by the rich when they promise to keep taking away our rights and civil liberties and promise to maintain mindless consumerism and rampant resource wastage. There are no governments for the people, by the people.The economic slavery is to blame for the drive to want more and more that we don’t need while millions suffer. Shame on all rich people!

        • says:

          Okay, but why focus on the actors? Galecki may be worth a total of about 20 million — a lot of money, sure. about 1/5 of what Ashton K is worth…and his 100 million is about 3 percent of what Oprah is worth, and her 3 billion is only about 5% of what the richest folks are worth. So why pick on Galecki? A real estate developer who “skillfully” bribes some politicians to get a skyscraper built can make that on one deal.

    • Alan says:

      I don’t know you, But I figure that if someone offered you five hundred plus thousand you wouldn’t tell them that’s to much money. If it was me I’d laugh all the way to the bank.

  2. alistaircrane says:

    They still can’t command that Friends salary of $1 million per episode. The times, they are a-changin’!

    • Elga N. says:

      They were the best!
      There was no bad episodes! Everything was perfect!

      • Babybop says:

        I know you were probably saying that sarcastically, but I actually think Friends was perfect…

        • Robb says:

          Agreed, every single episode had me smiling and laughing.
          A bit off topic from the actual story but have the writers of Friends wrote anything else(comedy wise)?

          • Vaidehi Krishnan says:

            Yes, look up something called episodes. It had Matt LeBlac playing an exaggerated version of himself fused with joey. It was very different from friends but I loved it.

            Somehow its apt that my first comment on tvline is about friends

        • Paris says:

          Not me. I couldn’t stand Kudrow or Schwimmer. And the stunt casting with Pitt and Selleck was ridiculous. I’ve never been tempted to watch a rerun.

          • Nat says:

            Lol, that is literally only you and no one else.

          • John says:

            Agreed. I couldn’t stand the whole show.

          • Adam says:

            Pitt was a stunt-cast. I’d argue that Tom Selleck’s Richard was on the show for too long (10 episodes total, but was dating for Monica for the majority of season 2) and too well-developed (more developed than any other boyfriend/girlfriend they had on that show) to really qualify as “stunt.” He was just a very famous guest star. But it did do a lot of stunt casting in one-off episodes (like Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Jeff Goldblum, Gary Oldman, etc.).

          • Keith Mills says:

            Friends was a great show far better than Rosanne or most of the shows on at the time but it is no where as good as BBT . The entire cast is great , Friends was good but not every episode nor every cast member gold. Pay them what they want , they deserve it , they are paying Aston K. 750 K ? Cut his salary and toss it into the pot .

      • abz says:

        It will definitely remain one of the great sitcoms out there, but I have to disagree with “no bad episodes”. There were several annoying storylines and some episodes weren’t all that great. I personally enjoy TBBT way more than Friends but they’re still both great shows.

        • neha says:

          See episode where Phoebe teaches Joey French. Bad, bad, bad. But, it’s pretty good considering that out of, like, 220 episodes, that there were only 1 AWFUL ones, and only a handful of mediocre ones.

      • lilkunta says:

        @ elga wrong. the show was good great even, but not teh best.
        there were bad episodes.
        and alot if unrealism.

    • cas says:

      I actually read somewhere they may command $1 million per episode. CBS won’t deny them as they are the biggest comedy. Plus I would think they should all be making more than Kutcher, I mean he walked on a few seasons ago and grabbed that salary. At least they worked up to their salary. Plus BBT is superior to TAAHM in my opinion.

  3. Kevin W. says:

    Galeki/Parson/Cuoco- 600k
    Nayar/Helberg- 200k.

  4. McVickers says:

    Show’s a hit, makes a mint, the actors should get their share. Supply and demand. If the network wasn’t making a mint off them, they wouldn’t pay. Get what you can, kids.

    • tjchase says:

      by all means allow greed to fill your hearts as I switch channels.

      • Nick says:

        Define “greed” please. If CBS is making a boat load of money from this show (and they are), why wouldn’t the ones doing the work be paid more? The actors earn enough in my mind, however they will likely be forever type cast into these types of roles. They have to think of their futures in a post BBT lifetime. Also, the crew & writers are probably the ones getting the shaft in this whole deal.

  5. Carm says:

    If Ashton K gets $750k per episode. Then Kaley, Jim and Johnny deserve what they want. They are making more money for the network. And Ashton is ridiculously overpaid for a show that should probably have been canceled a few years ago.

  6. ScrubsGuy says:

    They can ask for as much as they think they deserve.
    WB / CBS are free to say no and cancel TBBT / recast characters.
    Seems pretty fair. So much drama for a comedy! ;)

  7. King says:

    They all deserve pay bumps. They know it. The ratings say they do. CBS should know it. This is going to be an easy negotiation. Just keep great episodes coming!

  8. Hallie says:

    Personally Mayim Bialik deserves more, her Amy really pushed the show to new heights

    • roderk says:

      agree, plus it’s her character that has changed the most may be too compared to other.

    • Dr. Reid says:

      I’d chip in for Amy to go away forever.

      • Waage says:

        Yeah, me too… I’d support a Kickstarter or something, to get her off of the show. She’s awful

      • ninamags says:

        Omg! I totally agree with you, Dr. Reid.

        I cannot stand her. She is disturbingly creepy, weird and completely inappropriate regarding Penny.

        She seems like a stalker crazy- type.

      • CJ says:

        She was sweet at first, but now every moment she’s on my screen grates on my nerves. Extremely overrated character and performance.

    • meg says:

      Agreed, and I think Rauch deserves more too. They really should have held out for a higher price, I think they’re as integral to the show as any of their costars anyway, and losing either (or both) Amy and Bernadete would be detrimental.

    • Rich says:

      I’ve always adored Amy. Brunettes rule, and besides, though she dearly wants Sheldon for a steady, with her intelligence and strong personality, she could do without if she has to. Exactly my type!

  9. roderk says:

    with these wage increases, they will not be quick to find a girlfriend to Raj to make regular participation.

  10. Underpaid single mom says:

    Does ANYONE think that even a mere $30,000 an EPISODE is a ridiculous amount of money to be making? I mean think about it, if the show has even a small season (13 episodes a year) they are making $390,000 A YEAR! Doctors don’t even make that much. I’m not dissing on the show, I love BBT but seriously, hollywood and professional sports for that matter have unrealistic pay. I would love to make a fourth of that considering I’m a single mom. Good lord!

    • jj says:

      yes, it is a ridiculous amount of money when compared to a typical person’s salary. But when you consider it as a percentage of the money made by the show and the network, those salaries are quite reasonable.

    • Babygate says:

      This is nauseating enough for me to want to stop watching. Talk about income disparity! I understand that Johnny, Kaley and Jim are the stars, but the show would not work without the supporting cast. How is it possible that Mayim and Melissa have been making between $20k to $30k when they have been on the show for like three years? Seriously? How is this ok that Kaley makes almost $400,000 an episode and these ladies make such a minute fraction of that? That is sickening. And now they are going for even more? This is sickening…I’m losing the desire to watch and thus be complicit to this behavior…

      • ninamags says:

        I’m actually upset that Mayim might be making the same as Melissa, who has been on the show a lot longer.

        Bernadette is adorable, Amy is disturbing.

        • TV Gord says:

          Melissa joined the show 18 episodes before Mayam, so they are pretty much on par. Also, Melissa has done 68 episodes, while Mayam has done 63.

          I’m glad to see so many people correctly saying the cast deserves their fair share of the profits. (The writers do, too.) As I point out every time these ludicrous conversations come up about any cast’s salary negotiations, why should any of us care how much they make? It doesn’t cost us any more to watch!

      • John says:

        Income disparity arguments are what allow actors to command larger shares of television profits… Think how much the SHOW earns and what chunk of that is because of them.

        Following that, take into account the cost of actually doing the job at that level, including managerial and agent salaries (which are percentages).

        Then think about the fact that as recognizable people, they have to invest in secure home accommodations. No pinching pennies by renting folks. You have to be in a good neighborhood, and LA property value is BONKERS. Not to mention that the cost of living in LA is high, period.

        I haven’t even mentioned that working in television is actually brutal and something that should pay somewhat decently. Five 15-hour minimum work days a week, not much you can do for sick leave or vacation, and maybe a week or two off here and there as a break.

        All told, Rauch’s initial 30k an episode is high to us, but probably put her at a sort of “upper-middle class” kind of life.

        • Stephanie says:

          Thank you! I’m glad someone finally said this. Yea they get paid a lot of money and sometimes it’s too much but most of the time they are working 100-hour weeks getting to set at five in the morning and not leaving until midnight and if they don’t live where their show films they have to spend weeks and months away from their families. Not to mention their work is out their for the world to see and critique and for all these anonymous commenters to judge and most people don’t have to deal with that at their 9 to 5 jobs so part of it is hazard pay for having to deal with all that crap.

          • Alex says:

            Please- I’d take that “hardship” on in a heartbeat. But realistically it’s just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to income disparity in this country.

      • karen eggers says:

        I think they all make the show , jim parsons I would say is the main person but the others are all the same. I think its wrong for 2 of the girls to make 20-30,000 and the other 2 guys 75-125,00 while 3 of them make 350,00 and want 500,00 I don’t understand why Kaley paid more than Mayim or Melissa , and Johnny does not deserve any more than the other 2 guys if that much don’t think hes that funny. Really think what they are asking for is over the top

    • Babygate says:

      You have to take context into consideration. This show makes an obscene amount of money for the studios because they can command top dollar for ad space. The stars know what they bring to the table and they use it as leverage. You think that Melissa and Mayim making $390,000 a year is extravagant? That’s about what Kaley makes AN EPISODE! Jim and Johnny make even more. THAT is what I find inconceivable.

    • Jackson says:

      So, when the show rakes in millions and millions in ad revenue and licensing fees, you don’t think the actors should get a cut?

      You would rather the network itself keep all the money?

      See, haters like you never stop to think about that. The show will make a ton of money regardless of what the actors are paid. So, why should the network make millions, but the cast be paid next to nothing?

      • And consider the money made from syndication. TBS alone must be making the producers millions and that’s PURE PROFIT with no outlay. The only thing the actors can increase is their new-episode salary because they won’t see any of those syndication millions.

  11. bill says:

    This doesn’t seem greedy. Big Bang is making a fortune in profits, it’s the biggest hit comedy in YEARS. The actors are why people watch; they could legitimately make even more money if they wanted. Ashton Kutcher makes THAT much for a lesser hit on a show that has been in decline for years? There’s something wrong here.

  12. Morgan says:

    How on earth is Ashton Kutcher making that much money?

    • cas says:

      CBS is stupid. He took over a part on a successful sitcom and negotiated well. And somehow viewers are still watching enough to get it good ratings.

  13. Gina says:

    How much are the writers, the ones that actually MAKE the show, making?

  14. Badpenny says:

    Just what TBBT needs: more commercials to pay for the actors. I can practically watch an entirely different show while waiting for the commercials on TBBT to end.

  15. Brandy says:

    Why such pay disparity between Kaley and Mayim,Melissa?Or between the whole cast?Or bewteen Jim,Johnny and Kunal,Simon?How come Simon & Kunal negociate salary seperately?Is there a behind the scenes fued?Why arent Simon and Kunal making as much as jim ,Johnny, theyve been regulars on the show since it started.I think to avoid fueds the whole cast should be paid the same.

    • Badpenny says:

      When you sign your initial contract the amount is generally based on the needs of the role and your overall acting experience. Everyone doesn’t get paid the same amount as each person’s agent negotiates the best deal they can get their client at that time. That’s how the agents earn their 10-15%. Everyone doesn’t just get paid the same, nor should everyone get paid the same. It’s clear different actors have a much bigger impact on the series, and their character’s role gets expanded because of that. Look at how much Sheldon has changed between season 1 and now. As the character became more popular the writing for him changed and he became more quirkier.

    • lll says:

      That is interesting. It’s like there are certain members of the cast working as a team, but the whole cast isn’t working together as a united front. I wish I could say more, but that’s interesting.

  16. Josh Emerson says:

    Honestly, I think Mayin and Melissa deserve MORE than that. For me, the addition of the females has vastly improved the show from the early seasons. Yes, Jim Parsons is still the star. But I believe the three women have brought the show to another level in terms of the comedy. The recent seasons have been a lot better than the early ones. I still think the pilot is awful.

  17. Josh Emerson says:

    Also, may I add, Johnny Galecki is NOT worth $500k an episode! Is there anyone on Earth that actually watches because they want to see Leonard? lol The show would be fine without him.

  18. David says:

    Raj can’t even catch a break in real life.

  19. GIlda says:

    Amy and Bernie are certainly the newest additions and should therefore make significantly less, but it just seems almost comical that Sheldon might make 10 times as much as Amy. Sheldon is so central, I’m not even sure I disagree with it. But it seems weird.

  20. I’m a big fan of TBBT, but these salaries are ridiculous! Ashton Kutcher getting paid $750k per episode – just wow. The problem with Hollywood is that these actors get paid so much (really unnecessary amounts) and most don’t know what to do with it. Personally, I think 10% of their wage would be more than enough for them to live on…not forgetting this is PER EPISODE. The Big Bang Theory is only 20-minutes long. Yes I know it’s not just going in there, doing their bit and going home. I’m well aware they have to learn their lines, do a ‘dress-rehearsal’ and then the actual live show etc., but still, I don’t think this qualifies for such big bucks. The same goes for footballers!

    • Badpenny says:

      It’s somewhat important to keep in mind that by the time Agents, Managers, Publicists, dues, Security, and Taxes (especially California state taxes) are paid the actor gets less then 50% of the amount paid to them. That’s not to say they don’t make a HUGE amount of money. But when you see someone making $300,000 they’re only going home with around $125,000 of it.

      • Very true and a fair point. However, over here in the UK, that equates to about £77,000, that’s more than a doctor gets paid a year and they’re getting paid this for just one of 24 episodes. I do agree, articles like this fail to mention the actors’ outgoings, but still, to me it’s still way too much.

  21. Boiler says:

    Do any of you commenting on here feel athletes or actors are making way too much money? The amounts they make DIRECTLY affect cost of going to games or movies and to me are ridiculous. I am guessing that somewhere down the line we pay more due to less show time, more commercials and higher cable fees…..see Direct TV and CBS. These salaries are ridiculous. I love TBBT but it is sort of sickening to see these demands. Give them a percentage of syndication rights instead.

    • Dave says:

      You really think that if athletes got paid less, that ticket prices and cable fees would go down??? That money would just go into someone else’s pocket. They will charge whatever people are willing to pay.

      Warner Bros is getting $6 million an episode for TBBT from CBS, TBS, and Fox stations. Add to that overseas money, DVDs, streaming, etc. This is probably a multi-billion dollar franchise. I think the actors deserve their share of that. With the 3 stars negotiating together, they know that the show can’t continue without them. A deal will be reached that everyone can live with, because that is in everyone’s interest. There is too much money involved for a deal not to be made.

      • Boiler says:

        To answer yopur first question, if the salaries were somewhat reasonable yes ticket prices would go down. As to cable fees, athletes have nothing to do with that directly and I didn’t imply that, but networks charge cable for carrying their product and do pass along costs. The whole salary structure is out of whack and as much as I like TBBT perhaps it is time for networks to tell these folks forget it

  22. liz says:

    Good for them. For anyone who thinks its an obscene amount of money – ya, it is. But why should the actors get paid what the rest of us make and then the head people at the studios make even more money. The actors deserve an equal piece of the pie – its just a really rich pie

  23. The Squatch says:

    I’m actually surprised by the difference in salary between Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar. I would consider them about on the same level as each other character, story line and starring-wise. I couldn’t believe that Simon makes about 50k an episode more than Kunal. That is not a knock on Simon in any way. I love all the characters and actors. I really just thought they would be making about the same amount for some reason.

    I also think the ladies, Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch, should be making more per episode than even their new contracts give them. I think if the “main three” end up making 500k an episode then the others should all make at least 100k minimum and probably a lot more than that. 250k each for the boys and 100k for the ladies sounds good. (Not because of any sexist reasons, just going by how long they have been on the show.)

    • I agree. Last season Raj & Howard had most of the stories. Girls nights were one of the other really fun things on the show. It almost seems unfair that Mayim would make about 10 times less money than Johnny Galecky, considering her being in almost every story, being nominated for an EMMY for second time and being a consultant on the show, because she is the only actress there with an actual PHD.

  24. Pat D. says:

    On a side note, how much money do people think NBC would pay the cast of Seinfeld per episode to come back for a season? ;)

  25. Annie says:

    That just seems really selfish to want a $200,000+ raise, per episode. Most American’s are living paycheck-to-paycheck…or worse no paychecks. I think they are super talented and as a whole have a great chemistry, but it just makes me think less of them as human beings. Be thankful you have a job, and one you all love!! I wanna know why “Raj” Kunal, gets so much less than “Howard” Simon??!! Seems strange to me, sure he doesn’t speak if women are present, unless he’s drunk but he still is hilarious with his facial expressions and whispers!!! The leads should get more, but supporting characters (like Simon & Kunal) should be making the same amount as the other. People in show biz need to get their heads out of the clouds and realize what they are making now is more than some people see in a lifetime!!! stepping down from soapbox

    • AmbidextrousAspie says:

      You DO realize that thanks to advertising and licensing, huge money is there and that if the actors don’t get it, the studio executives do get it?

  26. Jay says:

    Wolowitz and Raj are so much funnier than Leonard. I struggle to see why Galecki makes so much.more than them – the show really could function without him. Jim Parsons by far deserves the most money though.

    Not sure why people get so outraged by the amount these actors get paid. They only get paid that because the show makes so many millions more. If the money didn’t go to the actors, it’d be going to the corporate conglomerates that make the show + Chuck Lorre. I’d much rather it go to the actors.

  27. Mikael says:

    I’m surprised Kaley would be getting a raise, since they hardly ever use her like they used to. It’s all Amy these days. I think she’s funny, but in small doses. I miss the earlier seasons when Penny was the focus. I know they need to switch things up after so many seasons, but too much Amy is not a good thing.

  28. meg says:

    Rauch and Bayik are severely underpaid compared to their costars. I had expected them to be paid not too much under Helberg and Nayar.

  29. brickslayer says:

    Howards mom should get 500k too.

  30. Brandy says:

    Amy sucks, she boring,annoying and a closeted lesbian with feelings for Penny & will never be happy in her relationship with Sheldon until/unless the sleep together which will never happen.I love Penny &Leonard but Penny will never be on the same page at the same time as him relationship wise_2 1/2 seasons of dating before she finally says I love you, and shes still not ready for them to live together?Raj was a good character the first three seasons, now he like a cartoon, a girly one.Lenord,Penny,Sheldon ,Raj used to be my fave characters but even Sheldons arrogonce, ego,selfishness and eccecriticies are getting too much and annoying.They barley use Penny anymore and shes a semi alcohlic the last couple seasons.

  31. Brandy says:

    Oh, and irl, Howard and Bernadette would never have gotten married what with the major difference of opionion on kids.Its a deal breaker in irl.He would have to give up his dream of having kids to make her happy since she hates kids or she wouldve decided to have one for him to make him happy.Neither is right,but neither is Bernadettes “ill work and avoid/ignore my family while Howarf stays home with the kids”.

  32. says:

    too much MONEY for acting what about the POLICE AND FIREFIGHTERS THEY DESERVE

  33. Matthew says:

    I was very interested to see how Jim Parsons was going to attack these negotiations. Lets call it for what it is: Clearly, Sheldon is the most popular character on that show. Additionally, Jim Parsons is required to learn the most dialogue by far, not to mention the fact that he’s the one with all the accolades( 3 Emmys, GG, Critics Choice, etc…) All this proves to me is that he doesn’t have a massive ego when clearly he could, and I don’t think anyone would fault him for that. If he were going into these negotiations separately from Johnny and Kaley he would be demanding probably at least 100k more than them…minimum, for the reasons I just stated. If I was his agent I would be looking at 1 # and 1# only…750k which as we all know is what Ashton is making. This isn’t about who’s the bigger *star* but just in the confines of TV, and the reality is TBBT is the number 1 comedy on television and currently he’s making 400k more than Jim. Outrageous!! With that being said, I applaud him (Jim) for putting his ego aside and going in head first with his other two co-stars. It just shows he views them as equals (performance wise, and obviously in every other way that counts)

  34. Matthew says:

    Almost forgot: Simon Helberg is without a doubt the most underutilized and underappreciated actor and character on that show. I know it’s easy to get overshadowed by Jim Parsons but Simon Helberg does more than hold his own. Just from a performance standpoint he should be making at least 250k an episode. Johnny Galecki is just meh, same as Kaley Cuoco but I get their significance to the show at this stage. But yeah, give Simon his money, he deserves it.

    • Zelia Ruka says:

      Well said. The man does impressions, sings, plays instruments and is just a wonderful performer/actor he definitely deserves a raise considering he has to showcase his talents much more than the other actors.

  35. Kathryn says:

    Why do people have to go on about how much they’re making? Think about it this way, when an actor plays a character, especially in a tv series like this for an extended amount of time, they miss out on time with their friends and family, and they probably have to be kept an eye on mentally. they’re playing the personality of someone who is not them. Easy way to develop mental disorders. Not to mention, it’s their job to keep us entertained. Just like it’s my job to take orders, cash them out, and give people food. It’s what they have chosen as a profession. Just because we couldnt/didnt make the same choice they did, does not mean we have any right to critisize them.

  36. fud90f says:

    A nice piece of a sweet pie. Even crumbs in this business are a lifetime achievement for most salaried workers. Its not really right to compare but complaining will not get you sympathy or empathy on any level nor should it.

    As for “hazard” pay I think the military gives you like $300 extra a month if you juggle prisoner food grades of explosives with a few hundred more if you also do it underwater as your lungs try not to burst.

    As far as normal America is concerned if your paying $10,000 for a pair of shoes not only would we walk in them we would sell them and pay rent for a year. How many episodes a year? So a paltry 20K an episode congratulations dr.surgeon with no liability and 12 yrs of school to pay off!

  37. Zelia Ruka says:

    Honestly speaking the characters Amy and Bernadette are getting more involved in the show they really do deserve a raise considering the difference between their pay and the other actors. honestly I believe they all should get raises due to the money the show makes but I dont think there should be such a difference in pay between the actors

  38. sherron says:

    They should be making much more money

  39. Nicole says:

    You can’t compare a top leading actor/actress in TV to any regular salary. In many fields there is the cream of the crop that will get paid in extravagant amount of money. It is all based on risk/reward..all part of capitalism. The top 10% of actor/actresses make less than then a doctor. You are looking at the top .5%… Most can barely make a living, another portion can make a modest living comparable to most fields, then a very very tiny portion make huge amounts because they were successful. They are the “Steve Jobs” of their field. In addition, they do work long demanding hours…and let’s face it their time to make this money is short-lived. That and they have quite a bit of responsibilities in terms of promoting the show that are required… If you write a book and it’s hugely successful like…per say Harry Potter… should you not get a portion of the profits? It’s the nature of capitalism.

  40. Carl says:

    I don’t care what they make as long as they continue to entertain.

    More power to them.

  41. Debbie says:

    Bbt is my favorite show never miss an episode. They should pay everyone the same. There’s great chemistry all around

  42. Jack says:

    Asking for more money?

    This makes me angry and has lowered my perception of the 3 actors. Clearly they don’t realise what type of show they are in, and the type of people that enjoy the show, and what those people support. $300,000 is more than enough!

    I was never a fan of Cuckoo any way.

    • Jackson says:

      Right, so, when the show rakes in millions in ad revenue and licensing fees for syndication, the network should keep it all for themselves?

      Why are you ok with the suits at the network making all the money, but not the actors who are the reason people tune in?

      You never stopped to think about it that way, did you? Most haters never do.

  43. Anne says:

    Friends was the most overrated show of all time.

    • THESE GUYS ARE GOOD. They deserve every cent they get as i never seem to get fed up with seeing their shows over and over again. I hope that the FIVE of them never break up , but am not ruling out additions, once they do not change the characteristics of the ‘ SCIENTISTS”

  44. we end each day with the big bang theory reruns. hope they last forever.

  45. Chris says:

    Ok this does not seem to he me I put in the search why has the big bang theory been cancelled then it comes up with this I do not understand! Urgh

  46. bryandyer says:

    the money is there- as actors they’re just trying to get a fair percentage of what’s being earned. if they don’t get a fair percentage of the earnings, it just goes to studio/producers, etc….

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  49. David Reed says:

    Its not too much.. consider how many times Bewitched has been re-run and played continuously around the world..don’t you think looking back that Elizabeth Montgomery deserved that much now in hindsight? Think how many ads have been played and how many others have gotten rich off her work. Also they pay huge payroll taxes and generally donate to good causes. I am all for the actors over the producers and behind the scenes moneybags who don’t need security or get stalked.

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