CBS makes counteroffer to Letterman

— CBS, in a tug-of-war with ABC for the services of talk show host David Letterman, has offered the "Late Show" host an annual salary of $31.5 million plus performance bonuses, a network source told The Associated Press on Wednesday.

Letterman, whose contract with CBS expires this year, would also receive additional salary increases in future years, said the source, who spoke on condition of anonymity.

ABC has offered Letterman $31 million a year and his own studio in the network's Times Square complex in New York in a bid to get him to leave CBS, according to Entertainment Weekly magazine.

Either raise would be a relative pittance. Letterman, who has been at CBS since 1993, reportedly earns $30 million a year.

Word of the ABC offer came to light last week. Officials with Letterman's production company, Worldwide Pants, have declined to comment, saying it would be inappropriate to do so while they are in negotiations with CBS.


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