- Petri Hawkins-Byrd was the popular bailiff on all 25 seasons of “Judge Judy.”
- Byrd told Entertainment Weekly that he was not asked to join the new show “Justice Judy.”
- “She informed me I was not being asked to come along on the project,” he said.
TV personality Petri Hawkins-Byrd, who played the stern bailiff on all 25 seasons of “Judge Judy,” has said that he was not asked to be a part of the new spin-off IMDB court show “Judy Justice.”
Byrd told Entertainment Weekly that he didn’t know Judge Judy Sheindlin was producing a new show to stream on IMDB until she announced the project during an appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” last year.
“My assumption is if you were going on to do something else, that you were at least going to ask me if I wanted to have the opportunity to audition for the role,” Byrd told the publication.
Byrd continued to say that he did not have the time to enquire about his potential role in the new show until after the taping of the 25th season of “Judge Judy” because his wife and longtime “Judge Judy” producer Makita Bond-Byrd underwent brain surgery.
“It wasn’t until July that I called the judge and asked, ‘Hey, should I look for something else, or am I included in the ‘Judy Justice’ project?'” he said.
“She informed me I was not being asked to come along on the project. I didn’t inquire as to why, that’s her choice. But she did inform me that fundamentally, I was priced out as the new bailiff on her new show. My salary would have been too much. I was curious: How would she know? She didn’t ask me. She didn’t give me an opportunity to have accepted a lower salary.”
Insider has contacted Judy Sheindlin’s representatives for comment. Late last week, however, Sheindlin’s spokesperson released a statement on Byrd not joining the new show that was obtained by Entertainment Weekly.
“Byrd is terrific and we had a great 25-year run. This is a whole new program with a whole new cast and an exciting energy,” the statement read.
Later, Byrd told Entertainment Weekly that his call with Sheindlin ended “pleasantly enough.”
“I don’t think she understood how confused and dismayed I was after being there for 25 years, from the beginning of her career, and not being at least given the opportunity to say whether or not I wanted to continue that relationship.”
The first trailer for “Judy Justice,” which was released last week, unveiled Kevin Rasco, a retired Los Angeles probation officer and former “Judge Judy” security guard, as Byrd’s replacement in the courtroom.
“Judy Justice” debuts November 1.