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Star Trek Prodigy Canceled

Star Trek: Prodigy has been canceled by Paramount+ in a huge shock to Trekkies (and the industry), although that doesn’t mean it won’t come back somewhere else.

Deadline’s article says season two will complete postproduction and be shopped to another platform. So I would expect the show to live on, somehow.

I think I watched five minutes of the first episode, realized “Oh, it’s for kids,” and that was enough for me. But I know a lot of Trekkies love it.

It’s deeply strange that Paramount+ was supposed to be the be-all, end-all home for Star Trek—and they finally did reunite all the films in one place, as various licensing deals to other platforms ran out—and now they’re axing “content.”

All of the streaming services are apparently realizing that they messed up, big-time—and that taking a ton of films and TV shows that they used to be able to sell, individually, all over the world, and instead offering it all via a giant funnel on a flat rate to consumers is A TERRIBLE BUSINESS DECISION!

Alas, it was a “race to the bottom,” led very successfully by the beast of them all, Netflix.

And now, for complicated tax reasons, all of the platforms can just “disappear” certain under-performing (or even unreleased) programs and movies and save money on their corporate balance sheet. (That’s what happened to Batgirl.)

Is it not obvious that what destroyed the music business is now destroying the movie business? It’s technology: the ability to eliminate what used to be the physical delivery system for the content (vinyl, CD) and instead have a virtual version—it’s not just the piracy, it’s that people get conditioned to it not having any value. “Hey, look, a thousand TV shows...ho-hum.”

It means the companies can’t create a physical version and mark it up and take profits all throughout the distribution chain. (I mean, you can, but it’s a niche collectible.)

First music, now movies. As a consumer, it’s super convenient; but as a producer, this is a very big problem.

I don’t think anybody has the solution and they’re all completely terrified.

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Robert Knaus
Robert Knaus
Jun 24, 2023

This is why I've been fighting for movies to come back to theaters (and seeing as many on the big screen as I can), because this new "watch everything at home" model is just not working for the industry that I love. Maybe we would have gotten here eventually, but the Pandemic accelerated the process exponentially, and studios have come to the sobering realization that you can't spend $200 million on a movie and give it away for "free" on a streaming platform without taking a bath on it. Even network TV 30 or 40 years ago sold advertising space during their most popular shows, TV movies and miniseries, and this was in the day when there were only three…

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