Television

South Park producers Trey Parker and Matt Stone ink MTV Entertainment Studios with ViacomCBS deal for Paramount+

MTV Entertainment Studios has inked South Park producers Trey Parker and Matt Stone to a new deal that will go through 2027, including 14 new movies made only for Paramount+, two every year, starting this year. It will likewise see the lead South Park series renewed through season 30 (2022 will see the show launch its 25th season). The contract is worth $900 million.

It’s accounted for to be one of the most expensive deals ever, with various sources expressing they were offered $A1.2 billion ($US900 million) for the commitment.

The deal with Parker and Stone is the clearest sign yet of ViacomCBS’s developing commitment to Paramount+. The streaming service trails any semblance of Netflix and Disney+ yet has added millions of subscribers since it rebranded in March. ViacomCBS is looking to the expansion of “South Park” movies to speed up its development. The series stays the most well-known TV show on Comedy Central.

As per the declaration, two of the original South Park movies will premiere on Paramount+ in 2021, with two a year arranged through to 2027. It will likewise see the series renewed through to season 30.

As per entertainment chief Chris McCarthy, the organization is additionally working with Parker and Stone on new original content. “Franchising marquee content like South Park and developing new IP with tremendous talents like Matt and Trey is at the heart of our strategy to continue growing Paramount+,” McCarthy said in a statement.

Chris McCarthy, president, and CEO of the MTV Entertainment Group moved toward Parker and Stone about expanding their deal with Comedy Central and getting a few “South Park” programming that would be elite to Paramount+. The organization’s present strategy is to use its greatest hits on cable to bait clients to its streaming services. Recently, McCarthy signed a new deal with Taylor Sheridan, the maker of the hit cable show “Yellowstone,” to make a spinoff show that will stream on Paramount+.

A move might confuse a few fans given the whole South Park library is accessible on HBO Max.

As indicated by The Hollywood Reporter, the deal appears to be a way to get the series’ programming on ViacomCBS’ own streaming service, which is Paramount+.

MTV Entertainment president and Paramount+ chief communications officer Chris McCarthy said the move was “at the heart” of the parent organization’s development system.

The news broke Thursday morning as ViacomCBS released its second-quarter earnings report.

Toward the finish of June, ViacomCBS had more than 42 million subscribers across its streaming services, which incorporate Paramount+, BET+, and Showtime.

The new movies will premiere exclusively on Paramount+, a move that might vex a few fans because the whole Comedy Central show’s library is on HBO Max. The new movies seem, by all accounts, to be an approach to get South Park programming on ViacomCBS’ own streaming service in the wake of cutting the HBO Max deal in 2019.

A source reveals to The Hollywood Reporter that Parker and Stone consider the two initial movies one big story broken into halves.

Generally, the long-running cartoon made by Parker and Stone has been on hiatus because of the pandemic, yet the team figured out how to make a pair of hourlong specials during that time. South Park Studios has been shut for over a year, so it makes sense the upcoming movies, similar to the hourlong specials, were produced remotely from the group’s homes.

“Matt and Trey are world-class creatives who brilliantly use their outrageous humor to skewer the absurdities of our culture and we are excited to expand and deepen our long relationship with them to help fuel Paramount+ and Comedy Central,” Mr. McCarthy said.

“Franchising marquee content like South Park and developing new IP with tremendous talents like Matt and Trey is at the heart of our strategy to continue growing Paramount+.”

In their own statement about the news, makers Parker and Stone said they were “really happy” to pen the deal, saying thanks to ViacomCBS for its proceeded with support.

“Comedy Central has been our home for 25 years and we’re really happy that they’ve made a commitment to us for the next 75 years,” the duo joked.

“When we came to ViacomCBS with a different way to produce the show during the pandemic, Chris (McCarthy), Nina (Diaz), Keyes (Hill-Edgar), and Tanya (Giles) were immediately supportive and enabled us to try something new that turned out to be really well received. We can’t wait to get back to doing traditional South Park episodes but now we can also try out new formats. It’s great to have partners who will always take a chance with us.”

The long-running cartoon series has been on hiatus in the midst of the pandemic, except for two hour-long specials during that time.

South Park Studios has been shut for over a year, with the upcoming movies, similar to the specials, prone to be created remotely from the team’s homes.

The pair likewise recently made headlines when they reported plans to attempt to purchase Casa Bonita, a US restaurant that was highlighted on their show in a classic episode.

“We are absolutely trying to buy it,” Parker said.

“We are going to do everything we can. We want to make it right and make it amazing.”

The famous cartoon premiered on Comedy Central back in 1997 and will launch its 25th season one year from now.

As monster media and technology organizations contend in the streaming wars, the worth of franchises like “South Park” has taken off to record statures. Hardly any, production teams have figured out how to benefit from the progressions in the home entertainment landscape better than Parker and Stone, who owns 50% of all online rights to the show.

Their new deal, which goes through 2027, covers six additional cycles of “South Park” and incorporates 14 made-for-streaming movies.

“We did a ‘South Park’ movie in 1999, and we’ve never done another one because the show has been so satisfying,” Stone said in an interview from his home in New York. “Now we’re older, and the idea of what streaming movies can be is pretty promising.”

At the point when Parker and Stone initially made “South Park,” in light of a short film they made in college, they were apprehensive that no one would watch — or, on the other hand, that they’d be forced to leave because of its outlandish humor. However, the show, which debuted in 1997, was a moment hit, delivering a huge number of watchers and making Comedy Central on the map. By the third season, they had prevented getting any notes from the network on the most proficient method to further develop it.

“We do whatever we want, and they are pretty supportive of it,” Stone said. “We’re the luckiest guys in TV in that way.”

“South Park” has now been broadcasting for 24 years, making it one of the longest-running series in TV history, outlasting each program on Comedy Central aside from “The Daily Show.” Along the way, Parker and Stone have kept up with the quality of the series, not to mention their sanity, to some extent, by sticking to a schedule. They just make between 6 to 10 episodes per year. Each season is produced over the course of a few months in Los Angeles.

The beginning of the pandemic overturned their routine. Last year, Parker and Stone didn’t produce a new season of “South Park.” They did figure out how to create a pair of specials, which inspired them to thoroughly consider some bigger ideas for “South Park.” They hadn’t made a film since 2004’s “Team America: World Police.” But imagine a scenario where they made a lot of longer-form “South Park” episodes.

Stone is hesitant to use the phrase “cinematic universe,” a term worn ragged by Marvel and its numerous imitators. Yet, from various perspectives, that is the thing that Parker and Stone are presently making. The coming Paramount+ movies will develop the current universe of “South Park” and present new concepts and characters.

Parker and Stone have consistently considered themselves to be part independent producers, part entrepreneurs. Early on, they rushed to perceive the power of the internet. While negotiating a new deal with Viacom in 2007, Parker and Stone proposed making a website where fans could watch recent episodes of the show for free. Stone credits the resulting site, South Park Studios, with keeping their young fan base engaged while likewise checking theft.

As part of that arrangement, negotiated by their long-time legal counselor Kevin Morris, Parker and Stone secured a 50% stake in all future online deals for the show. Their stake, when worth pennies, is the basis of Park Country, an organization which they own outright, that is currently esteemed at more than $1 billion.

Parker and Stone at last shut down South Park Studios when Viacom licensed the streaming rights for the show to Hulu in an $87.5 million deal. Hulu later re-upped that agreement for about $110 million.

In 2018, the streaming rights to “South Park” indeed came available to be purchased. At that point, Viacom was currently merging with CBS, which worked All Access — the streaming service that would later be rebranded as Paramount+. HBO Max plunged in and outbid All Access, offering $500 million more than five years.

The deal with HBO Max sent one of Viacom’s most famous shows to one of its fiercest streaming competitors. It additionally expanded the worth of the “South Park” library to a level few shows ever reach.

“That was one of the better things that happened in our financial life,” Stone said. “We took it to market and established its worth. That’s rarely done right now.”

The team at Park County is presently focused on their next big deal abroad. Throughout the years, Viacom has licensed the rights to “South Park” to various streaming services in various regions — a mishmash of plans that as of now creates more than $10 million every year in sales. Park County’s CFO, Keith Pizzi, is meaning to combine everything in one gigantic general deal for the international streaming rights.

The Paramount+ streaming platform launched in March in the US in a bid to contend in a crowded and content-hungry marketplace led by the likes of Netflix, Disney+, and Amazon Prime.

While ViacomCBS didn’t immediately comment on the $900 million (generally Rs. 6,675 crores) figure, it would put the deal on a standard with Reese Witherspoon’s sale of her Hello Sunshine organization to a new private equity-backed media venture this week.

It likewise comes after Amazon in May consented to purchase MGM studios for $8.45 billion (generally Rs. 61,500 crores).

Other streaming platforms recently launched by significant media and tech organizations to join the purported “streaming wars” incorporate HBO Max, Peacock, and Apple TV+, each looking for huge content libraries to attract and retain subscribers.

ViacomCBS said Wednesday that it had arrived at 42 million streaming subscribers. Current market leader Netflix has more than 200 million.

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