'The Big Bang Theory' Season 8 delayed: Cast contract disputes postpone filming

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"The Big Bang Theory" was supposed to begin production on Season 8 on Wednesday (July 30). That's not happening. Instead, a contract dispute between the CBS comedy and the show's original stars is holding filming for an undetermined amount of time.

"Due to ongoing contract negotiations, production on 'The Big Bang Theory -- which was originally scheduled to begin today -- has been postponed," production company Warner Bros. TV says in a statement published by E!Online.

At issue are the contracts for stars Jim Parsons, Johnny Galecki, Kaley Cuoco-Sweeting, Simon Helberg and Kunal Nayyar. Sources indicate that the first three are hoping to make $1 million per episode (what the "Friends" cast made by the end of that show's run), while Helberg and Nayyar are also looking for raises.

The two regulars who joined the cast later in its run -- Mayim Bialik and Melissa Rauch -- already have contracts for the upcoming season.

Renewed by CBS through Season 10, "The Big Bang Theory" is one of the most consistently high-rated programs on television. It is expected to premiere Season 8 Monday, Sept. 22 at 8 p.m. ET/PT (moving to its old timeslot on Thursdays in October).

Photo/Video credit: CBS