Judge Judy is Departing CBS After Show Was Replaced By The Drew Barrymore Show

June 03, 2021

By Elaina Harewood

Judy Sheindlin, best known as Judge Judy, is leaving CBS after a long 25-year run in which the show was the top first-run show in all of syndicated TV.

In an interview published Wednesday, Sheindlin told the Wall Street Journal that the decision was affected by how one of her shows, Hot Bench, was handled. Hot Bench first premiered in 2014 and features a panel of judges: Tanya Acker, Patricia Dimango and Michael Corriero. And all three rule on the cases before them. 

Back in September, CBS introduced the syndicated Drew Barrymore Show to which the WSJ reported, "some CBS stations in major markets made room for it by moving the court show Hot Bench to their secondary channels." Sheindlin is not pleased with CBS’s actions, especially because it's reportedly besting Barrymore in ratings: an average of 2.3 million viewers to 719,000 this season.

"You disrespected my creation," Sheindlin said. "And you were wrong. Not only in disrespecting my creation, but your gamble in what you put in its place."

Sheindlin then laughed. 

"We had a nice marriage," she said. "It's going to be a Bill and Melinda Gates divorce."

CBS Media Ventures President Steve LoCascio gave a response to Sheindlin in the newspaper: 

"We have had an incredibly successful relationship with Judy over the last 25 years. It has been an honor representing her show, and just like there has never been another Oprah, there will never be another Judge Judy."

Forbes estimated in May 2020 that between her two TV projects, Sheindlin has amassed a fortune of $440 million, mostly from the $47 million a year that she earned on Judge Judy since 2012. 

The last new episode of Judge Judy is scheduled to air July 23.

Despite being 78, Sheindlin already has plans for a new show, which is still untitled. It will debut on Amazon's streaming service IMDb TV, and will feature her taking cases with higher stakes. 

While she wants the new show to succeed, she is more than OK if it doesn't.

"At this point," she said, "I don't need that validation of my footprint."