Four Paramount+ originals — “Star Trek: Prodigy,” “Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies,” “The Game” and “Queen of the Universe” — have been canceled by the streaming service and are set to be removed as the streamer prepares to merge with Showtime, TheWrap has learned.
“As we prepare to combine Paramount+ and Showtime later this month in the U.S., we are refining our content offering to deliver the best streaming experience for subscribers,” a spokesperson for Paramount+ told TheWrap. “The Paramount+ series ‘Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies,’ ‘Star Trek: Prodigy,’ ‘Queen of the Universe’ and ‘The Game’ have completed their runs on Paramount+ and will not be returning to the service. We want to extend our thanks to our tremendously talented cast and crew and our producing partners for their passionate work and dedication on these programs and we wish them all the best on their future endeavors.”
Financial concerns and discoverability on the service played into Paramount+’s decision to completely remove these series rather than simply cancel them. The company will announce the financial impact of these changes during a later earnings call.
Nickelodeon and CBS Studios will have the option to shop “Star Trek: Prodigy” to other networks, just as Paramount Television Studios will have the option to shop “Grease: Rise of the Pink Ladies” and CBS Studios will have the option to license “The Game” elsewhere.
Of the four, the least is known about the potential future of World of Wonder’s “Queen of the Universe.” The final four episodes of the series premiered on June 22 with the series expected to be removed on June 30.
The “Star Trek: Prodigy” cancelation and removal is arguably the most shocking, considering the series from Kevin and Dan Hageman had previously been ordered for two seasons. Season 2 of the animated show for younger audiences was expected to premiere later this year. Season 1 of the series will be removed from Paramount+ shortly. In the meantime, Season 2 is currently in post-production, and the studio is currently looking for a new home for the series.
“‘Star Trek: Prodigy’ will not be returning for the previously announced second season. On behalf of everyone at Paramount+, Nickelodeon and CBS Studios, we want to thank the Hagemans, Ben Hibon, Alex Kurtzman and the Secret Hideout team, along with the fantastic cast and crew for all their hard work and dedication bringing the series to life,” a spokesperson for Paramount+ said.
Even with this removal, it does not seem as though Paramount+ has severed its relationship with Alex Kurtzman’s “Star Trek” universe. The young-adult focused “Star Trek: Starfleet Academy” and the movie event “Star Trek: Section 31” are still in the works. Additionally, “Star Trek: Strange New Worlds” has been confirmed for a Season 3, “Star Trek: Lower Decks” was confirmed for Season 4 and the final season of “Star Trek: Discovery” is still in the works.
Though it’s happening as the streamer prepares to combine with Showtime, Paramount+ removing its originals continues an alarming trend in streaming. Last year, several of Max’s originals — formerly known as HBO Max — were removed from the service and either shopped to other services or added to Warner Bros. Discovery’s FAST channels, including multi-million dollar hit “Westworld.” In May, Disney+ also announced it would remove “certain content” from its streaming platforms.