Amidst negotiations, Modern Family cast sues for higher salaries

By | July 24, 2012 at 4:08 pm | One comment | News, TV/Movies | Tags: , , , , ,

Yesterday, we reported that the adult cast of Modern Family were negotiating their new contracts, asking to be paid $200,000 an episode. Now, it seems, the situation has gotten worse. The cast is suing 20th Century Fox Television, the studio behind the show, one of the highest-rated sitcoms today.

Instead of arriving today for the show’s first table read of season four, Ty Burrell, Julie Bowen, Jesse Tyler Ferguson, Eric Stonestreet and Sofia Vergara filed suit in Los Angeles Superior Court to void their contracts, according to the Hollywood Reporter, who notes, “The legal theory, according to sources who have seen the lawsuit, is that their deals violate California’s “7 Year Rule,” which prohibits personal services contracts for longer than 7 years. This tactic is a common one for actors who seek to void contracts during renegotiations for increased compensation.”

Ed O’Neill has also joined the lawsuit, as a sign of support, the Reporter says. The veteran actor already has a higher salary than the aforementioned cast members.

Now, $200,000 an episode seems like a lot. But let’s consider a few things: The Friends cast was getting $750,000 by their sixth season and by 1997, the Seinfeld cast was getting $600,000 an episode. That’s not to say Modern Family will end up as iconic as those two shows, but its on the way. And I’m not suggesting they deserve Friends and Seinfeld money (yet!). The last thing to consider is that by May, Modern Family was the highest rated sitcom in 2012, only beaten by reality shows American Idol and The Voice and Sunday Night Football on NBC.

So, do you think they deserve the raise?

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Dylan P. Gadino

Dylan is the founder and editor in chief of Laughspin. He launched Punchline Magazine in 2005 (which became Laughspin in the summer of 2011) with childhood friend Bill Bergmann. Dylan lives in northern New Jersey with his wife and two sons. He hopes the Shire is real.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/2UXJVLZFVBGP4Y4KP4TBZHC6UA Jenny

    I
    think ABC should be holding on tight to the awesome show that is Modern Family!
    It is easily the funniest series on the network, as seen by the many Emmy
    nominations that it was recently given. I’m glad I’ve been hoarding all the
    episodes from the previous season on my DVR to tide me over during this silly
    contract spat. When my Dish coworker recommended my Hopper DVR, I never realized
    its loads of recording space would come in so handy. Now, I don’t have to cut
    off my Modern Family addiction cold turkey. I just hope they settle this quarrel
    soon!

     

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