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Wed October 5, 2011
The End May Be Near For TV's 'Simpsons'
LYNN NEARY, host: Our last word in business today is...
(SOUNDBITE OF THEME SONG FROM TV SHOW, "THE SIMPSONS")
UNIDENTIFIED GROUP: (Singing) The Simpsons.
NEARY: The animated comedy "The Simpsons" is in its 23rd season, and there may not be a 24th. The actors who voice the parts of Homer, Bart and other key characters are fighting with 20th Century Fox over pay. Fox says it may end the hit comedy if an agreement can't be reached. The actors reportedly make about $8 million a season. Fox wants them to take a 45 percent pay cut.
Viewership is down from its peak, and the company wants to cut production costs. According to the website The Daily Beast, which first reported the pay dispute, the actors did offer to take a 30 percent pay cut in exchange for a sliver of profits from "Simpsons" merchandise. Fox said no. And that's the business news on MORNING EDITION, from NPR News. I'm Lynn Neary.
RENEE MONTAGNE, host: And I'm Renee Montagne. Transcript provided by NPR, Copyright National Public Radio.