Paramount Network drops non-scripted programs in rebranding
Another major change is coming from ViacomCBS as the studio is now rebranding its cabler, Paramount Network, as Paramount Movie Network and is dropping all non-scripted programs as it moves to focus on television movies, according to Deadline.
Chris McCarthy, President of Entertainment and Youth Brands at ViacomCBS, revealed that the network is planning to air 52 original movies a year alongside one miniseries or scripted series per quarter, while the majority of its non-scripted programs including Ink Master, Wife Swap and Battle of the Fittest Couples have been outright cancelled. However, the studio is looking to move some of its reality and non-scripted titles to its other networks, including Bar Rescue and Lip Sync Battle.
The decision to rebrand the network comes on the heels of the ViacomCBS merger resulting in the move to rebrand the streaming network CBS All Access to Paramount+, which is set to begin sometime in early 2021 and will feature original series as well as PVOD titles including The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run and its spin-off series Kamp Koral: SpongeBob’s Under Year.
The writing seemed on the wall for a potential change in the network earlier this year as the studio cancelled the military dramedy 68 Whiskey after one acclaimed season, shut down development on its straight-to-series adaptation of Sexy Beast and sold off the Darren Star-created and Lily Collins-starring dramedy Emily in Paris to Netflix. The network’s plan to air one miniseries or scripted series per quarter does align with its decision to renew the Kevin Costner-starring hit westerns series Yellowstone for a fourth season.
Development of all new projects on Paramount Movie Network, which has created hope for reviving the once-beloved TV movie business, will be overseen by A+E Networks exec Megan Hooper White, who joined the studio earlier this year as EVP and Head of Original Movies and Limited Series.
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