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Marketplace Morning Report

Reruns can still mean revenue for canceled shows

Tracey Samuelson Aug 23, 2018
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Actors Mayim Bialik, left, Jim Parsons, Kaley Cuoco and Johnny Galecki from "The Big Bang Theory" attend The Paley Center for Media's 33rd Annual Paleyfest at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles in 2016.
Photo by Matt Winkelmeyer/Getty Images

After 14 billion years and 11 television seasons, CBS has announced that the next season of its long-running sitcom “The Big Bang Theory” will be its last. But the end of production doesn’t mean Sheldon and the gang will disappear from the small screen. The show’s already been in syndication for eight years and will likely continue in reruns for a very long time.

Even with all of the recent changes in the TV business, that kind of life after death can still mean big money — for the right type of show. Think “Law & Order,” “Seinfeld,” “Friends” or even older favorites like and “Mash” and “Happy Days” — shows with broad appeal and self-contained episodes.

Reruns aren’t as profitable as they have been now that Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu and TV networks are investing big in original programming. But “The Big Bang Theory” may be the last of a dying breed: a huge TV hit that can live on and on and on in syndication. 

Click the audio player above to hear the full story. 

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