March 14 (Bloomberg) -- CBS Corp., owner of the most-watched U.S. television network, renewed 18 programs for next season, including “The Big Bang Theory.”
Four comedies, nine dramas, three reality series and two newsmagazine shows will return for the 2012-2013 television season, which starts in September, New York-based CBS said today in a statement.
CBS renewed more than three-quarters of its prime-time schedule before executives in May pitch their biggest advertisers on buying commercial time ahead of next season. The network will obtain “double-digit” price increases and lead Walt Disney Co.’s ABC, Comcast Corp.’s NBC and News Corp.’s Fox in gains, Chief Executive Officer Leslie Moonves forecast March 10 at a conference at the University of California, Los Angeles.
The network is in “preliminary discussions” with Time Warner Inc.’s Warner Bros. Television studio about future seasons of “Two and a Half Men,” CBS said. Returning comedies include “How I Met Your Mother,” “Two Broke Girls” and “Mike & Molly.”
CBS will bring back the dramas “NCIS” and “NCIS: Los Angeles,” and “Hawaii Five-O,” said the network, which also ordered new seasons of “The Mentalist,” “Criminal Minds” and “Person of Interest.” The reality shows “The Amazing Race,” “Undercover Boss” and “Survivor” will also return.
Viewership is averaging 12 million this season, a 1 percent gain from last season and more than any of its competitors, CBS said. The network ranks second to Fox in viewers ages 18 to 49, a group targeted by advertisers.
In addition to “Two and a Half Men,” CBS hasn’t determined whether to order additional seasons of “Unforgettable,” “Rob!,” “Rules of Engagement,” “A Gifted Man,” “CSI: New York” and “CSI: Miami.”
CBS, controlled by Chairman Sumner Redstone, climbed 0.3 percent to $31.43 at 4:15 p.m. in New York. The stock has gained 16 percent this year.
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