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Showtime to be integrated into Paramount+ in the US, trio of shows axed

US studio group Paramount Global has unveiled plans to integrate the Showtime brand into Paramount+ across both streaming and linear in the US.

Bob Bakish

The new offering, set to launch later this year, will see the US linear service rebranded as Paramount+ with Showtime. In addition, the paid SVoD tier of Paramount+ will also be rebranded as Paramount+ with Showtime in the US.

In a memo to staff, CEO Bob Bakish said the integration will “unlock operational efficiencies and financial benefits across our broader portfolio.”

Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Paramount Media Networks, will continue to lead the Showtime studio and its US linear network operations. He will work closely alongside Tom Ryan, president and CEO, Paramount Streaming, who will oversee the rebranded Paramount+ with Showtime streaming business.

In a separate memo, McCarthy said the move will allow the company to put more resources into building out the Showtime brand and turn its properties into global hit franchises. In order to do this, McCarthy said the company will “divert investment away from areas that are underperforming and that account for less than 10% of our views.”

He added that Paramount Global has already started conversations with its production partners about “what content makes sense moving forward and which shows have franchise potential.”

McCarthy noted that the company will hold a town hall meeting on February 23 to go into further details about what the changes mean for staff.

News of the integration was accompanied by a trio of cancellations, including one for a completed series that has not yet aired.

Three Women, the drama starring Shailene Woodley, Betty Gilpin, DeWanda Wise and Gabrielle Creevy, will not move forward at Showtime and will be shopped to buyers. The show is based on American author Lisa Taddeo’s non-fiction book of the same name, about a group of women who are on course to radically change their lives.

Also cancelled at Showtime are Let the Right One In and American Gigolo, which had both aired their first seasons.

The prospect of integrating Showtime within Paramount+ has been suggested and rumoured for quite some time, though over the past year Paramount Global execs have publicly downplayed the idea.

Broader changes have been afoot at Paramount Global since October when it was revealed that David Nevins, chairman and CEO of Paramount Premium Group and chief creative officer of Paramount+ scripted series, was set to leave the company.

With Nevins’s departure, it was announced that: Showtime Networks would move into Paramount Media Networks under the leadership of McCarthy; Showtime’s OTT teams would move into Paramount Streaming, reporting to Ryan; and Paramount Television Studios would move under George Cheeks, president and CEO, CBS, and chief content officer, news and sports, Paramount+.


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