Trekkies everywhere were given a new reason to celebrate when CBS chief Les Moonves announced on Monday (Nov. 2) that a new “Star Trek” TV series was coming. Continuing to expand on the ever-popular franchise, a new series will boldly go … straight to streaming in 2017.
Once the excitement began to subside, many fans expressed confusion as to why such a big sounding project would be available exclusively on the network’s subscription service CBS All Access.
The Hollywood Reporter is reporting that Moonves delivered an explanation at Tuesday’s (Nov. 3) third quarter earnings conference call, highlighting the importance of original content on the streaming service:
“We’re looking to do original content on All Access and build up that platform. Netflix is our friend a competitor. They compete with [CBS Corp.’s] Showtime. All Access will put out original content and knowing the loyalty of Star Trek fans, this will boost it. … There’s about a billion channels out there and because of Star Trek, people will know what All Access is about.”
CBS sounds pretty confident with this decision and given the direction television entertainment is taking, it may be the right one. However, once the new series premieres to the service, the competition from the other big streaming platforms — Netflix, Hulu, Amazon — will only be more fierce.
Not to mention, there’s a strong possibility that viewers will pass on dropping an extra $6 a month for the content.
Still, “Star Trek” is a property that has stood the test of time and brought to the world multiple TV series, an ever-growing movie franchise, and a truly voracious fandom that a new program feels like a no-brainer.
With the promise of regular original content coming from the three big streaming services, CBS may have their work cut out for them. But a “Star Trek” show may be the right move in dipping their toes into the real streaming game.
But will it work out? Only time will tell. “Star Trek’s” first episode premieres on CBS in January 2017, with subsequent episodes on CBS All Access.