Could the end of Bones be near? Yes, we've heard this once or twice before, but this time, a big new lawsuit brought by producers—including stars Emily Deschanel, David Boreanaz and author Kathy Reichs—could actually signal the end of the long-running Fox show.
The trio (via their respective production companies) have sued studio Twentieth Century Fox and Fox Broadcasting company for breach of contract and fraud, alleging that they have been cheated out of more than $100 million of gross revenues by underreporting earnings and making backhanded deals. In their lawsuit, Boreanaz, Deschanel and Reichs allege that an audit of the accounting revealed "more than a dozen accounting errors, tricks and deceitful acts that [the studio] has used to deprive" the trio of their profits in a "systematic and pervasive effort to cheat" them out of their money, which they estimate "to exceed tens of millions of dollars."
The studio had no comment on the legal proceedings, but a source tells E! News that there's a very good chance that Bones could get another season. The show is the longest-running primetime series in the network's history, and—as the lawsuit notes—for a network whose new shows average about three seasons each, it's a valuable property.
Of course, that all depends on how quickly the lawsuit is resolved—and if things get ugly between all the parties involved. The X-Files star David Duchovny sued Fox for similar reasons in 1999, but ended up leaving the show in 2001 (eventually to return for several episodes). It lasted two more seasons, spawned a second movie, and is returning to the network with new episodes in 2016.
Boreanaz told E! News while filming the show's Halloween crossover with Sleepy Hollow that he thinks it could be time for Dr. Temperance Brennan (Deschanel) and FBI Agent Seeley Booth (Boreanaz) to pack it in.
"For me, personally, I think it's time. I think that 11 seasons is great," he said at the time. "I mean, one season is great! I don't really count it as seasons but what we've given to the show and what we can do, for me it's great to see the show come to an end and do it the way we want to do it."
Bones airs Thursdays, 8 p.m. on Fox.