“Friends” in negotiation for ninth season

There’s word that Ross, Rachel, Monica, Chandler, Phoebe and Joey will stay pals for a ninth season.

Friends‘ host network, NBC, and the show’s producer, Warner Bros. TV, have already begun negotiations for such a deal, Variety reports. Although no details have been finalized, it seems the talks are only about payment issues and not whether the show should continue.

The money talks are predicated on the assumption that the actors–all of whom have taken on numerous other acting projects while shooting Friends and are rumored to be ready to end the show–are willing to sign on for another season. This seems likely, considering the financial negotiations wouldn’t be relevant or necessary if the actors weren’t interested.

Warner Bros. will have to decide how much it’s willing to pay the cast, who will more than likely want to increase their current paychecks of $750,000 per episode to somewhere around $1 million per episode.

NBC will have to decide what to pay Warner Bros. for the show’s per-episode licensing fee. The current price of $5.5 million could increase by at least $1 million.