Sitcom Becomes the Most Profitable 30-Minute Show in TV History

Nov 2, 2012  •  Post A Comment

Executives behind a beloved sitcom revealed how much money the series has been pulling in since it went off the air 12 years ago. And the numbers say the show about nothing, “Seinfeld,” is definitely about something in syndication — it’s about making more money than any sitcom ever has before.

The New York Post reports that the comedy series from creators Larry David and Jerry Seinfeld has made $2.7 billion since the last first-run episode aired on NBC, according to Time Warner, which owns the series.

That number makes "Seinfeld" the most profitable 30-minute show in TV history. Since 1998, reruns have grossed $2.3 billion. Executives report that revenues from cable were about $380 million.

All in all, "Seinfeld" created 180 episodes in nine years on NBC. Breaking down the numbers, that means that each half-hour episode has earned more than $14 million so far.

The Post notes that Forbes magazine has been estimating that Jerry Seinfeld alone makes between $65 million and $80 million a year from reruns of the show.

Our friend, TV analyst Marc Berman, told the Post, "The thing about ‘Seinfeld’ is that it was well-written, well-acted and well-produced — a triple threat. People related to the characters and it’s just plain funny. This is a show that can last forever. It’s like watching ‘I Love Lucy’ — it’s still funny and you can keep laughing at it today."

2 Comments

  1. Not bad for a series that started out as a failed TV pilot that aired in the summer of 1989 on NBC.
    The series began the following year on NBC with several additional episodes.

  2. Amazing numbers for an amazing series. In fact, one of the episodes inspired me to write this essay: http://bit.ly/PtEAFS

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