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'Judge Judy' to End After Next Season

Next season of CBS Television Distribution’s Judge Judy will be its last, Judge Judy Sheindlintold Ellen DeGeneres on her show on Monday. The 2020-21 season is the show’s 25th.

“CBS felt they wanted to optimally utilize the repeats of my program because they had 25 years of reruns so what they decided to do was to sell a couple of years worth of reruns. But I’m not tired … so Judy Justice will be coming out a year later,” Sheindlin, 77, said.

Often syndication’s highest-rated show, Judge Judy will end original production after the 2020-21 season and then stations that own the show will air repeats. CBS Television Distribution acquired the Judge Judy library, which includes more than 5,200 episodes, from Sheindlin in 2017 for some $100 million after several companies made offers for it, according to sources.  Repeats of Judge Judy tend to perform well, unlike repeats of day-and-date talk shows.

At the time of the library sale, Sheindlin intended to retire after the 2020-21 season, so the deal included extending the show and Sheindlin, who earns $47 million per year, through that season and then concluding. Based on that agreement, CBS Television Distribution secured deals with TV stations to air Judge Judy repeats starting in 2021-22.

Related: CTD Renews 'Judge Judy' Through 2020-21, Acquires Library

Details on what Judy Justice will be are scarce, other than Sheindlin saying that the show is happening. The show is being represented for domestic and international distribution by former CBS Corp. Chief Licensing Officer Scott Koondel.

"I am looking forward to a banner 25th anniversary season," Sheindlin said in a statement. "CBS has been a fine partner for 20-plus years. They have decided to monetize their Judge Judy library of reruns. I wish them good luck with their experiment."

For its part, CBS is keeping its powder dry.

“We have the greatest respect for Judy Sheindlin and have enjoyed a very successful relationship with her for over two decades," said a CTD spokesperson in a statement. "We look forward to making the 25th anniversary a true celebration of one of the most iconic shows in television history.”

Sheindlin has a history of success in creating spin-offs out of Judge Judy: she created and launched syndicated court show, Hot Bench, in 2014. That show continues to do well, typically landing as the third or fourth-ranked show in daytime.