Criminal Minds has suffered a few major shake-ups over the last few years, and there are a whole new set of worries heading into season 13. While stars Joe Mantegna and Matthew Gray Gubler have signed new contracts, both Kristen Vangeness and A.J. Cook are threatening to leave the series.
As with many ensemble shows, the contract issues come down to an issue of equal pay. Both Cook and Vangsness are series regulars on the show, putting in the same amount of work as their male co-stars, but making considerably less money.
According to Deadline, the two actresses are negotiating their new deals together. They did the same thing in 2013, when they revealed that their salaries were less than half of what was being paid to Gubler and Shemar Moore. They reached a new deal at the time, but are still making less than they deserve.
This time around, if equal salaries aren't acquired, the two actress are reportedly willing to walk away from the show completely.
If a new contract isn't reach, Criminal Minds would be without two of its fan-favorite characters, Penelope and J.J., at the start of next season.
The theme of equal pay has been seen all around television in recent years. Some shows are finally giving the women on their series' credit however, as The Big Bang Theory and Shameless have both upped the pay of their female co-stars after contract holdouts.
Hopefully Cook and Vangsness will get the pay raise they deserve, and join the likes of Mantegna, Gubler, Adam Rodriguez, Damon Gupton, Aisha Tyler, and Paget Brewster, who are all confirmed to return for the next season.
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