The stars and producers of Blue Bloods are going to see less green.
CBS has renewed the venerable cop drama for its 14th season after the cast and producers agreed to take what sources described as a 25 percent pay cut.
Sources close to the Tom Selleck production say the stars and key producers all agreed to the pay reduction in order to keep the Friday night cop drama running, and keep the hundreds of production staffers employed for another season.
With the renewal, Blue Bloods becomes CBS’ second longest-running current series as NCIS: Los Angeles is ending this season after 14 seasons. Only the flagship NCIS series, which was recently renewed for its 21st season, has aired longer than Blue Bloods.
“Blue Bloods has dominated Friday nights since its premiere and remained an important anchor for CBS’ winning lineup,” said Amy Reisenbach, CBS Entertainment president. “Led by the outstanding Tom Selleck, and an incredible cast and creative team, viewers continue to embrace the Reagans, their law enforcement family, and the series’ dramatic storytelling. We can’t wait to pull a chair up to the Reagan family dinner table for another fantastic season.”
Produced in-house at CBS Studios, Blue Bloods has been a cash cow for Paramount Global thanks in part to rich syndication and international deals. The drama remains one of CBS’ most-watched originals and anchors its Friday night primetime lineup. The show is broadcast’s No. 3 drama in total viewers, averaging more than 9.5 million per episode. With delayed viewing, that number grows to top 11 million.
Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan, Will Estes and Len Cariou star alongside Selleck in the series that, alongside SWAT, CBS had sought budget reductions. The fate of SWAT, a co-production between Sony TV and CBS, remains unclear. Co-creator Shawn Ryan recently told THR podcast TV’s Top 5 that the SWAT renewal hinges on both studios coming up with more favorable economics.
“Right now, it’s up in the air whether SWAT will get picked up for a seventh season, and that has nothing to do with ratings. You would never see that situation 15 years ago,” he said. “SWAT is third in the demo at CBS; there’s no reason why the show shouldn’t be picked up other than the economics of the business are changing. CBS and Sony will or will not figure out a way to economically make a season seven work.”
Blue Bloods joins CSI: Vegas, The Equalizer, all three of Dick Wolf’s FBI shows, rookies Fire Country and So Help Me Todd, NCIS and its spinoff, NCIS: Hawai’i, as CBS dramas that earned early renewals. The network’s comedy roster for the 2023-24 season includes Bob Hearts Abishola, Ghosts and The Neighborhood, all of which also were renewed early. Left on the bubble are SWAT, and first-year shows East New York and True Lies, the latter of which debuted in March. The network has already picked up Justin Hartley drama Tracker for next season.
Keep up with all the broadcast renewals, cancellations and new series orders with THR’s handy scorecard.