The town of Springfield is once again safe from cancellation as Fox has announced that, after lengthy contract negations with the voice actors, an agreement has been made and The Simpsons has been renewed for two additional seasons.
In a statement released by Fox, the safety inspector at the Springfield Nuclear Power Plant, Homer J. Simpson, had this to say: “Woo Hoo! I outlasted Andy Rooney.”
Proving that Hollywood can be a fickle place, the announcement of two additional seasons of The Simpsons comes as a surprise to those that believed the Fox executive who said the network would only order one additional season of the long-running series – no matter what. According to one of the voice actors (unnamed), this was nothing more than a cheap negotiating tactic.
Originally, Fox wanted the voice actors to take a 45% pay cut, in order to bring the production costs of The Simpsons down 30% overall. This proposal was quickly declined by everyone involved. As a counter-offer, the voice actors agreed to take a 30% cut, if they were given a small piece of the back-end profits. As expected, Fox declined this offer.
In an attempt to help out the contract negations (and to keep The Simpsons on the air), many of the series’ top producers agreed to a pay cut. Unfortunately, this didn’t help the studio and the voice actors come to an agreement.
Giving the voice actors an ultimatum of making a decision by Friday, or the series would be canceled, Ned Flanders himself, Harry Shearer, presented another proposal to the studio: a 70% pay cut for a small piece of the back end profits of the series. Like the last offer proposed by the voice actors, Fox declined.
In response to Shearer’s offer, it was revealed that under no circumstances will Fox give any of the voice actors a piece of the back end.
Currently, we don’t know the details of the agreement between the studio and the voice actors. Though, this information is expected to be revealed eventually. Whatever it may be, it appears that everyone is (more-or-less) happy with it. Happy enough to continue, at least.
And with that, Fox has renewed The Simpsons for seasons 24 and 25 – and a 25th anniversary celebration will come. But will The Simpsons’ 25th year on the air also lead to another one of these contract negotiations? Or will Fox bring the series to an end?
I guess we’ll just have to wait and see
The Simpsons airs Sundays @8pm on Fox – and will for at least two more years
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Source: New York Times