Sein here for $200m

Sitcom still proves a cash cow

It's been five years since the final episode aired, but the money-making potential of Seinfeld is as strong as ever.

Yesterday, a new deal was announced to keep the show running on cable TV until 2011 - worth an impressive $200million.

The TBS network has paid $800,000 an episode to repeat the show, and agreed to give distributors Sony two 30-second slots in each episode to sell to advertisers, which could be worth more than $500,000 a pop.

The new deal is an extension of TBS's existing agreement to pay $1million an episode, plus the two advertising slots, to rerun the show until 2006.

When that original deal was signed, in 1998, it was a record amount for cable TV - a record that still stands.

The series has already generated $7.4 million per episode in syndication to off-network terrestrial channels, not to mention the huge advertising sums generated when it first ran on NBC.

Its success does have a downside for fans, though. While it can still raise millions in syndication, the show is less likely to be released on DVD or video.

Published: 29 Apr 2003

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