'The Simpsons' facing cancellation over contract dispute?

Published Oct 4 2011, 21:37 BST  |  By

Marge and Homer Simpsons in The Simpsons

© Fox

The Simpsons is reportedly facing cancellation.

The long-running animated series could be axed due to a contract dispute between the show's voice actors and 20th Century Fox, The Daily Beast reports.

The studio purportedly wants the actors to agree to a 45% pay cut or it will cease production on the Fox series. Meanwhile, the actors have offered to take a 30% cut as long as they receive a small portion of the show's back-end earnings.

Earlier today, 20th Century Fox released a statement regarding the contract negotiations, insisting that it is committed to finding a solution to the dispute.

"23 seasons in, The Simpsons is as creatively vibrant as ever and beloved by millions around the world," reads the statement. "We believe this brilliant series can and should continue, but we cannot produce future seasons under its current financial model.

"We are hopeful that we can reach an agreement with the voice cast that allows The Simpsons to go on entertaining audiences with original episodes for many years to come."

Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston recently signed on to voice a spy on the animated series, while Glee's Jane Lynch will play Homer's new personal assistant in an upcoming episode.

The Simpsons first premiered in December 1989. It is the longest-running American sitcom, the longest-running American animated programme and the longest-running American primetime scripted television series ever.

The Simpsons returns October 16 at 8/7c on Fox. Enjoy the latest TV Box Sets with Sky Watch now