Following the closing time on Wall Street, the merged entity's management, which will be called ViacomCBS, held a conference call with the investment press announcing the benefits of the merger of CBS and Viacom, announced earlier in the day. Mixed with the company's jargon, some conversations were of interest to Star Trek fans.
Leveraging Star Trek
As mentioned in the announcement, the TV and movie rights for Star Trek and Mission: Impossible were both reunited as rationales for the merger of CBS and Viacom. New ViacomCBS CEO Bob Bakish expanded a bit on this in his discussion with the investment press as he designed the combined library in the recently merged company:
We will have one of the largest iconic intellectual property libraries, including more than 140,000 premium -tv episodes and over 3,600 movie titles. This library reunites TV and movie rights for some of our most popular franchises, including Star Trek and Mission: Impossible. And we see significant potential to better leverage these and other features across platforms and assets, including film, TV, live events, recreation and consumer products.
And TrekMovie is not the only outlet to note the reunion of Star Vandra. This afternoon, the Hollywood Trade Deadline made a post-merger announcement titled "Star Trek" Ready to Become New Wonders Like CBS and Viacom Merger Branch Franchise Under One Fleet, "which noted Bakish's mention of leveraging Trek. Deadline also offers this analysis:
The new opportunities with multiple platforms to increase the size of the company may mean that Trek can soon make a giant leap in its ambitions, not unlike the 1980s and 1990s that elevated Star Wars from a film film franchise to the ubiquitous present, wall-to-wall cultural power that it represents today. As we all know, money has a way of improving a proposal. In those years, Star Trek brain trust has already recognized that the animation press is considered a way to improve the brand's toy business and win kids' hearts , the senses and the grant money – another site from a now Disney owned Lucasfilm used e to masterful action to create fan-fidelity for characters not in the original movie trilogy.
Viacom Content May Be Coming to All Access Soon
A recipient of the merger may be CBS's subscription streaming services, including CBS All Access, home to Star Trek: Discovery and other upcoming Star Trek exhibitions . During the same conversation, CBS CEO Joseph Ianniello discussed how the deal will help the plans for the growth of these services, saying:
This agreement allows us to share our premium content and brand names to drive growth … Just keep in mind to add content from Nickelodeon, BET, MTV and Comedy Central to CBS All Access and Paramount movies to Showtime.
Adding content from these libraries can greatly increase the content available for CBS All Access and help it compete in "streaming wars," especially with competition from new services from Disney, NBC Universal and Warner Media. Nickelodeon content can Just last week, CBS announced that they are adding child content to CBS All Access with a new deal with DHX Media that would include 1,000 sections of library content and new sections of Danger Mouse and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs Ianniello noted that the merger puts them in a whole new league: "We talked before about 1,000 hours of programming children, now we have the best in the world with the world's leading child brand."
There is also a Star Trek connection to all this because CBS is developing an animated children's Trek cartoon for Nickelodeon. nniello discussed today, there is a good chance that the not yet mentioned Star Trek animated show for Nickelodeon could end up on All Access as well.
Bakish also noted that CBS library content is also expected to move to Pluto TV, the free ad-supported streaming service that Viacom purchased earlier this year. The service has no original programming, but Viacom has already started using the platform with library content from its MTV and Comedy Central libraries. It is possible that the back catalog of classic Star Trek exhibitions may also end up on Pluto.
While the announcement stated that the merger is expected to be completed by the end of the year, Bakish indicated some of this new use of content back and forth could begin in the past and say:
There is nothing to stop us from moving forward in start unlocking that opportunity in the very near future. Obviously, this is something we will build on over time, but there are some low hanging fruit there that we will try to choose fairly soon.
This is an evolving story, keep up with all the updates on TrekMovie.com.