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OTRC: 'The Big Bang Theory' renewed for 3 more seasons

Jim Parsons of 'The Big Bang Theory,' talks to OTRC.com at the Paley Center for Media's PaleyFest on March 13, 2013.

"The Big Bang Theory" has been renewed for not one but THREE new seasons.

CBS announced the news on Wednesday, March 12. The highly-rated sitcom, which stars Jim Parsons and Johnny Galecki as quirky scientists and Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting as their friend Penny, will continue to air through the 2016-2017 season, the network said in a statement obtained by OTRC.com. "The Big Bang Theory" is currently on its seventh season.

"Comedy is a big part of our schedule, and 'The Big Bang Theory' is the biggest comedy force on television," said Nina Tassler, chairman of CBS Entertainment. "This multi-year deal further strengthens our network's position for future seasons and marks another chapter in the great partnership CBS enjoys with Warner Bros. Television for delivering audiences the best in comedy. We're proud to work with and showcase the incredible talents of Chuck Lorre, Steve Molaro and this amazing cast every week."

According to Deadline, the three main cast members are set to begin salary negotiations soon. The website said they received about $350,000 per episode and are "projected to get to the 'Friends' cast mark of $1 million an episode." The actors, CBS and production company Warner Bros. Television have not commented. Deadline also said two other show regulars, Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch, have already closed deals to return next season.

"The Big Bang Theory" debuted in 2007 and has won five Emmys. Parsons received an Emmy for Best Comedy Actor for his role three times, most recently in 2013.

The show also received a three-year renewal in 2011.

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