When NBC announced in January that it was canceling the political drama after seven seasons, it said the final episode in May would be accompanied by a retrospective on the series' history.Cast members wanted to get paid for reminiscing, like getting paid for a high school reunion.
Instead, NBC is airing a repeat of "The West Wing" pilot on Sunday prior to the final episode, where the Democrat portrayed by Jimmy Smits is inaugurated as the next president.
NBC had no official comment on the switch of plans. However, the network couldn't reach an agreement with the show's cast on what or if they would be paid to gather one last time and reminisce about their experience, said a person close to the show who would speak about the negotiations only on condition of anonymity.
Showing the very first episode of "The West Wing" costs NBC nothing because the production was long-since paid for.