September 6, 2012
Warner Bros. Signs New Exclusive, Four-Year Overall Deal with Chuck Lorre, Continuing Long-Standing Relationship with the Top Comedy Hitmaker
BURBANK, Calif. Highly successful television writer/producer Chuck Lorre will continue to call Warner Bros. Television home, with the Studio announcing today that the top comedy hitmaker has signed a new, exclusive, multiyear overall development and production deal with the Studio. Warner Bros. Television President Peter Roth made the announcement of the pact, which also includes a component for feature films potentially written, developed and/or directed by Lorre, via Warner Bros. Pictures.
Under the terms of the four-year agreement, Lorre will develop new television programming continuing to write and produce comedies while also expanding into dramatic series and potential longform projects for both the broadcast network and cable marketplace via his Chuck Lorre Productions, Inc. banner, and he will continue to serve as executive producer of the hit sitcoms Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory and Mike & Molly. All current and future TV projects from Lorre will be produced in association with either Warner Bros. Television or Warner Horizon Television, with global distribution provided by Warner Bros. International Television Distribution.
Peter Roth said: "Chuck Lorre is the quintessential comedy writer/producer of our time, the most successful creator/showrunner of the last 25 years in this business. We are so incredibly excited and honored to be continuing our partnership with him. Chuck has had a profound impact on Warner Bros. Television over the last 12 years, and we look forward to a long and successful future relationship."
The new deal extends the long-standing relationship between the Studio and Lorre which began in 2000, and continues a relationship between WBTV President Roth and Lorre that dates back even further, to 1995, when Roth served as President, 20th Century Fox Television, and brought Lorre to that studio.
Chuck Lorre commented: "I'm proud to say that at twelve years and counting, my relationship with Warner Bros. is now officially longer than either of my marriages. With that in mind, it seemed appropriate to extend our little corporate love affair and try for 'until death do us part.' I'm also excited to have an opportunity to venture into the world of drama. After writing and producing sitcoms for twenty years, it'll be a welcome relief to take all the violence, insanity and human suffering from behind the cameras and put it out front. And finally, the feature component of this new deal allows me to fulfill a lifelong ambition to have a project in 'turnaround.'"
Lorre co-created and currently serves as executive producer of The Big Bang Theory network television's #1 comedy among Total Viewers for the 2011–12 season and Two and a Half Men, network television's #2 comedy among Total Viewers. He is also executive producer of Mike & Molly, the #4 comedy on network TV among Total Viewers last season. Among Adults 18–49, The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men rank as the #2 and #3 comedies on network television, respectively.
In addition to their network success, off-network broadcasts of The Big Bang Theory and Two and a Half Men dominate the syndication landscape, currently ranking as the #1 and #2 programs in all of syndication among Adults 18–49 and 25–54. Two and a Half Men airs in syndication on broadcast stations and also leads FX's comedy block. The Big Bang Theory premiered in fall 2011 in syndication, airing five nights a week on broadcast stations and also airing on TBS.
Including syndication and the CBS telecasts of Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory and Mike & Molly, more than 30 hours of Lorre-produced programming are broadcast per week in the U.S.
Lorre recently signed a deal with Simon & Schuster for the publication of What Doesn't Kill Us Makes Us Bitter, the first-ever print collection of Lorre's irreverent and often controversial end-of-show vanity cards. The hardcover coffee table book will be published in October 2012 and will feature a curated selection of Lorre's vanity cards. All of Lorre's proceeds from the sale of What Doesn't Kill Us Makes Us Bitter will benefit the Dharma-Grace Foundation, established by Lorre in 1999 to further his ongoing support of the Venice (Calif.) Family Clinic the largest free medical clinic in the country, dedicated to providing free, quality health care to people in need as well as many other health care–related charities and educational efforts.
Prior to coming to WBTV, Lorre created and executive produced the hit sitcoms Dharma & Greg, Grace Under Fire and Cybill, and he also was a co-executive producer/writer on the long-running hit comedy Roseanne.
In 2012, Lorre was inducted into the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences Hall of Fame, and he also received the Sir Peter Ustinov Comedy Award at the Banff World Media Festival, which recognizes creative talent and contributions to the media industry. In 2009, he was honored with a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame for his life-long contribution to the entertainment industry; was honored with the NATPE Brandon Tartikoff Legacy Award for exhibiting extraordinary passion, leadership, independence and vision in the process of creating television programming and in evoking the spirit of Brandon Tartikoff's generosity; and was awarded the 2009 Television Showman of the Year Award at the 46th Annual ICG Publicists Awards ceremony, which recognizes individuals whose creative accomplishments reflect the finest qualities of what has traditionally been defined as showmanship.