Somebody get Jimmy Lennon Jr. ready: it’s not showtime. Get ready for “Paramount + With Showtime” on cable and streaming instead.
Today, Deadline published an article citing internal communications from Chris McCarthy, President and CEO of Paramount Media Networks, and Bob Bakish, President and CEO of parent company Paramount Global, to be released on the Showtime premium cable channel before closing. outlined a complete restructuring and rebranding of . This year’s.
From Bakish’s notes:
We are happy to share the next steps in our evolution. Today, we are announcing the full integration of his SHOWTIME into Paramount+ on both streaming and linear platforms later this year. This will allow viewers to enjoy more popular franchises and hit originals. To reflect this change, both Paramount+’s premium streaming tier and the SHOWTIME linear network will become “Paramount+ with SHOWTIME” in the United States.
It’s an amazing move that marks the end of Showtime’s 47-year independent identity as a premium cable channel. It also marks another evolution, less than a year after his parent company, formerly known as ViacomCBS, was rebranded and restructured as Paramount.
A follow-up memo from McCarthy focuses on “redirecting investments to SHOWTIME’s strengths,” stating:
As part of Paramount+, more resources can be invested in building the lanes that made the SHOWTIME brand famous[…]
… especially referring to “complex characters” and “powerful worlds” in series of scripts such as “Yellowjackets”, “Dexter” and “Billions”.
Both Bakish and McCarthy’s notes outlining both Showtime’s remarkable history and Paramount+’s vision for the future with Showtime clearly and completely lack the words “sports” and “boxing”. .
This is an ominous omission, given the following line in McCarthy’s note:
[W]e diverts investment from areas that perform poorly and account for less than 10% of our view.
That statement follows a second deadline report that Showtime will not produce a second season of the original series “American Gigolo” and “Let the Right One In” and will not continue with the completed first season of “Three Women.” Served just before. Screenplay series starring Shailene Woodley and Betty Gilpin.
The comments and movements are very reminiscent of a similar transition on HBO. HBO famously ditched boxing entirely in 2018 after 45 years and over 1,000 bouts of him.
HBO Sports vice president at the time Peter Nelson said at the time: Less than two years later, Nelson joined boxing in the “ex-HBO” category as part of his continued withdrawal from sports programming and layoffs of his more than 600 WarnerMedia/AT&T employees. Did.
Since then, HBO and the streaming platform, now known as HBO Max, have been part of a series of reorganizations that have included spin-offs, mergers, rebranding, and cancellations of existing properties, with the cost of storing completed projects increasing. It will never be released for reductions and taxes. benefits of rest.
For boxing fans, everything is disastrously similar, but this time the future of boxing is not mentioned and is not resolved rather than eliminated at the beginning of the process. If the worst happens, it could mean the end of nearly 37 years of boxing on Showtime and the end of boxing on his linear cable channel, Premium in the US.
The possible termination of Showtime Boxing is evident in Al Haymon’s premier boxing champions, Showtime’s primary broadcast partner and major content provider, and potentially the current boxing pay-per-view business model. and tertiary effects.
McCarthy’s memo will be announced at the company’s town hall meeting in Los Angeles on February 23rd. Bad Left Hook provides upcoming news and updates for Paramount+ with Showtime and future boxing news and updates related to it.