Mar 03, 2017 08:37 PM EST

‘Big Bang Theory’ Million Dollar Leads Are Taking Pay Cuts To Raise Female Co-Stars' Salaries

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The “Big Bang Theory” cast has been together for 10 years, and fans of the show can attest to the chemistry and connection of the actors onscreen. Recently, their real friendship came to light as five of the original members reportedly agreed to take pay cuts so that two other cast members can get significant raises.

According to Variety, the original cast members Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco, Kunnal Nayyar, and Simon Helberg agreed to a small pay cut to free up money to raise Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch’s salaries.

The original cast is said to be earning $1 million per episode each as of the current 10th season. But for a potential 11th and 12th season, the five would earn $100,000 less.

Bialik and Rauch both joined “The Big Bang Theory” in season 3 and are earning significantly less than their co-stars. Both actresses are said to be earning $200,000 in the current season. The two are said to split the $500,000 from their co-stars, which means that Bialik and Rauch will each be earning $450,000 in what could be the final two seasons of the CBS sitcom.

Both Bialik and Rauch’s characters have been extremely vital to the show’s storylines, as fans tuned in to see the relationship progress between Bialik’s Amy and Parson’s Sheldon. Meanwhile, Rauch’s Bernadette just had a baby with Helberg’s Wolowitz character.

What remains to be seen now is whether Bialik and Rauch will negotiate further, in order to get closer to parity with the original cast members for their new deals.

Parsons, Cuoco, and Galecki were the first “Big Bang Theory” cast members to get a $1 million per episode deal. Before production began on season 8, the three were able to renegotiate new three-year contracts for the $1 million per episode deal. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Parsons, Galecki, and Cuoco negotiated together at the time.

For more, check out Jobs & Hire’s report on the reasons why great employees quit.

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