September 22, 2020

‘Judge Judy’ Will Rule Only in Reruns After Next Season

Judy Sheindlin’s hit courtroom television program will stop taping new episodes, but in an apparent challenge to CBS, she said she was starting a new show, “Judy Justice.”

Credit…Chris Pizzello/Invision.

For 24 seasons, “Judge” Judy Sheindlin has reigned as the stern, hallowed matriarch of what has become the most watched courtroom in daytime television.

But this coming 25th season of “Judge Judy,” Ms. Sheindlin said, may very well be her last. In an appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” airing on Monday, she said that CBS would be airing reruns after the coming season ends next year. She also raised the possibility that she would compete with “Judge Judy” with a new show.

In a statement to The New York Times on Monday, Ms. Sheindlin suggested that her breakup with CBS was not necessarily a smooth one.

“CBS has been a fine partner for 20-plus years,” Ms. Sheindlin, 77, said in a statement to The New York Times. “They have decided to monetize their ‘Judge Judy’ library of reruns. I wish them good luck with their experiment.”

Ms. Sheindlin, a former criminal and family court judge in New York City, is the highest-paid television host in the country, reportedly earning $47 million a year. For the last 10 seasons, “Judge Judy” has been No. 1 in first-run syndication, according to CBS Television Distribution. In 2017, Ms. Sheindlin sold CBS the rights to her show’s library for a reported $95 million.

It was unclear whether CBS, which declined to comment, had failed to agree on a new contract with Ms. Sheindlin, or if it simply decided it did not need more new episodes now that it owned the library.

In her interview with Ms. DeGeneres, Ms. Sheindlin seemed to place the onus on CBS, with whom she said she has had a “successful” 25-year relationship.

“CBS, I think, sort of felt they wanted to optimally utilize the repeats of my program, because now they have 25 years of reruns,” she said in a clip released by “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” on Monday morning.

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