Entertainment Weekly

Stay Connected

Subscribe

Advertise With Us

Learn More

Skip to content

Article

Everybody Loves Raises

Posted on

Attention, aspiring Brad Garretts. Networks are taking an increasingly tough stance with TV actors hell-bent on scoring a raise before their contracts are over. Prime-time stars with six-year deals traditionally try to renegotiate in season 3, when it’s supposedly clear whether the show’s a hit (the Friends, who now earn $1 million-plus per episode, first pulled their all-for-one, one-for-all thing in year 3). But actors’ demands are beginning to fall on deaf ears: Cast members on the four-year-old Yes, Dear were given the brush-off last season when they tried to get raises from roughly $50,000 an episode, as were Ed stars Tom Cavanagh and Julie Bowen, who now earn $50K to $75K an episode.

”There’s this assumption they’re entitled. That’s wrong,” says an exec. ”Now it’s, You’ve made a deal, stick with it.” Still, there are exceptions. Sources say ABC is poised to give Jim Belushi (now at $75K per episode) more coin for According to Jim, a third-season show that slaughters NBC’s Frasier in 18- to 49-year-olds (ironically, Frasier’s Kelsey Grammer is TV’s second-highest-paid actor, at $37 million, behind Everybody Loves Raymond’s Ray Romano, who earns almost $40 mil). Jim is ABC’s second-most-popular comedy with adults 18-49 — which makes all the difference come negotiation time.