After fifteen seasons, "Judge Joe Brown" has hammered the gavel for the last time. The courtroom show, which first premiered in September 1998 and is syndicated by CBS Television Distribution, has been canceled, reportedly due to falling ratings and disagreements in contract negotiations.
"'Judge Joe Brown' will not be returning for another season. We would like to thank Joe for 15 great years, as well as executive producer John Terenzio and the entire staff for all their hard work and dedication to the show," said CBS Television Distribution in a statement to Broadcasting & Cable.
Since its inception, "Judge Joe Brown" has been the second highest rated court show after the genre frontrunner "Judge Judy." However, the show's ratings have slipped in recent years, dipping as low as 20% year to year.
Brown, who was the first black male to be the judge of a courtroom television show, expressed relief about the change.
"It was time to move out on my own since I had some ideas that I had been having to pull teeth with no novocaine to get adopted," said Brown, an alumnus of the UCLA School of Law, to Broadcasting & Cable.
While "Judge Joe Brown" may be canceled, CBS renewed 18 series for the 2013-2014 television season.
The renewed dramas include "NCIS," "NCIS: Los Angeles, and "CSI," as well as "The Good Wife," "The Mentalist," "Blue Bloods," "Person of Interest" and "Hawaii Five-0."
The returning comedies include "How I Met Your Mother," "2 Broke Girls "The Big Bang Theory," and "Mike & Molly." A new season for "Two and a Half Men" is still under discussion.In addition, "60 Minutes" and "48 Hours," as well as the reality programs "Survivor," "The Amazing Race" and "Undercover Boss" will also return.