The Paramount brand has long been synonymous with films and more recently has been the name used for Paramount Network, a cable network formerly known as Spike TV, TNN, The National Network and The Nashville Network.
CBS got into the streaming game early with CBS All Access and Showtime OTT, which had 16.2 million subscribers combined as of June 30. Now ViacomCBS is trying to make a bigger splash and compete against more established competitors, ranging from Netflix, Amazon Prime and Hulu to Disney Plus, HBO Max and Peacock.
Paramount Plus will feature a broad range of programming from the company’s current businesses, including news, sports and entertainment. ViacomCBS announced five new original series that will be added to its roster by the time it launches in the U.S. early next year.
At this point Paramount Plus is expected to cost the same as CBS All Access and, like CBS All Access, have ad supported and ad free versions.
ViacomCBS plans to launch Paramount Plus internationally as well in 2021, with the first markets being Australia, Latin America and the Nordics.
“Paramount is an iconic and storied brand beloved by consumers all over the world, and it is synonymous with quality, integrity and world-class storytelling,” said ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish. “With Paramount Plus, we’re excited to establish one global streaming brand in the broad-pay segment that will draw on the sheer breadth and depth of the ViacomCBS portfolio to offer an extraordinary collection of content for everyone to enjoy.”
The newest original series ticketed for Paramount Plus are:
The Offer, a scripted limited event series from Paramount Television Studios based on Oscar winning producer Al Ruddy’s experiences making The Godfather.
Lioness, a spy drama based on a real CIA program, follows a Marine recruited to befriend the daughter of a terrorist. The series is produced by Paramount Network and 101 Studios.
Behind The Music--The Top 40, a new version of the memorable MTV series, looks at the 40 biggest artists in MTV’s 40 year history. The series is being produced by Creature Films and MTV Studios.
The Real Criminal Minds, a docuseries based on the CBS TV series, produced by XG Productions in association with CBS Television Studios and ABC Signature.
The Game, a revival of the BET series, from CBS Television Studios and Grammnet Productions.
ViacomCBS had previously announced that the new service would feature SpongeBob SquarePants content including the new Kamp Koral from Nickelodeon and the SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run.
It will also have CBS All Access shows such as The Good Fight, The Twilight Zone, and the latest iterations of Star Trek, including the upcoming Star Trek: Strange New Worlds.
The company said it plans to continue to develop new original series from BET, CBS, Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon and Paramount Pictures leading up to the launch of Paramount Plus.
ViacomCBS began expanding CBS All Access this summer and said August was one of its best month ever in terms of signing up new subscribers. The average age of new subscribers in August was younger than the service’s average.
“The response from consumers in just the early weeks of the service’s expansion already illustrates the tremendous opportunity ahead of us in bringing these phenomenal ViacomCBS brands together in one premium streaming home under the new Paramount+ name,” said Marc DeBevoise, chief digital officer, ViacomCBS and CEO of ViacomCBS Digital. “With the addition of even more content from across the portfolio as well as the new exclusive originals we are announcing today, we look forward to the early 2021 rebrand and bringing existing and new subscribers more of the compelling, genre-spanning live sports, breaking news and mountain of entertainment ViacomCBS has to offer.”
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