Sheehan & Associates, P.L.C.

Contract dispute halts production of hit TV show

Michigan residents who enjoy the hit television series 'The Big Bang Theory" may be interested to learn that the cast and the CBS network are involved in a labor dispute. The eighth season of the show is scheduled to air in September 2014, but production has stopped as negotiations between cast representatives and network executives over new contracts take place.

The show has been a staple of the CBS fall lineup for many years, but executives at the network do not appear to be worried about the continuing contract negotiations. A CBS representative said that such situations were an indication that the network had a successful show, and that such disputes often happened as networks prepared their fall programming. The representative added that these disputes were usually resolved as deadlines approached and she expected an agreement to be reached in due course.

The network's apparent lack of urgency may be due to their experience with contract renewal brinkmanship, but it could also be because time has not yet become a pressing concern. Network executives have plenty of time to work out a deal before the premiere episode of the eighth season of "The Big Bang Theory" is scheduled to air on September 22.

Labor disputes might be resolved as pressure mounts and financial consequences loom. However, the goal in such situations should go beyond simply reaching a compromise that all parties can live with. A more prudent objective could be an agreement that serves as both the impetus for a fresh start and the foundation for years of cooperation. A labor law attorney may provide guidance in these situations. Their advice could help the broad strokes of contract discussions to develop into specifics that clearly define roles and responsibilities.

Source:, "Contract dispute delays 'Big Bang' production", July 31, 2014

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