Paramount+, despite being home to some top-earning movies as well as the Star Trek franchise, hasn’t turned a profit.
Paramount+ has been struggling to stay afloat, and according to a report by Trekmovie which has all the details about who’s doing what, the streaming channel is looking at potentially laying off 1,000 employees in the early part of next year. Skydance Media, owned by David Ellison, is supposedly interested in taking over or absorbing Paramount, which would include the Star Trek properties.
What could this mean for the future of Star Trek? Fortunately, Skydance already has a relationship with Paramount, as it has co-produced the last two Trek feature films and will also be co-producing Star Trek 4, if that film ever makes it off the ground. [That could be questionable considering Skydance ended its film deal with Paramount.] With Skydance being behind the Star Trek franchise, a potential buyout could be a good thing moving forward.
Paramount+ is shutting down Star Trek properties and has eliminated one series.
So far, Paramount+ has cancelled Star Trek: Prodigy and Star Trek: Discovery. Star Trek: Picard ended earlier this year, and the series that was supposed to be Section 31 will now be a movie instead. Though there’s one new series, Starfleet Academy, coming to the streaming channel, that still leaves only two series, Strange New Worlds and Lower Decks, in production.
Having a new leader at the helm could be a good thing for Star Trek, especially since Skydance Media has the financial means that Paramount+ is missing. The media company has been a part of films like Mission: Impossible, Top Gun, Terminator, and Jack Ryan to name a few and just last year, signed a multi-year feature film deal with Apple TV+. So the company hasn ‘t been putting all of its eggs in one basket, which is exactly what Star Trek needs.
Star Trek works best when it’s licensed to other streamers instead of being held in place. Netflix, according to Statista, has 247.2 paid subscribers while Paramount has 63 million. So there will always be more eyes on Netflix content. And if Star Trek returns to Amazon Prime, that expands the possibilities of more viewers, and the more viewer interest, the more incentive any company has to create more Star Trek content. It just makes sense. So any merger or buyout could be a good thing for Star Trek though it won’t be good for the staffers at Paramount+ facing potential layoffs.