Paramount claims that Warner Bros. Discovery owes $52 million for ‘South Park’ streaming rights

    A few months after Warner Bros. Discovery (WBD) sued Paramount over the streaming rights to “South Park,” Paramount is now striking back.

    On Wednesday, April 19, Paramount defended WBD, who claims the company is withholding two required payments of $26 million each, bringing total unpaid fees to $52 million.

    “South Park Studios has adhered to the terms of the written Term Sheet. WarnerMedia does not,” writes the other party. “Instead, despite continuing to exploit and profit from the more than 300 episodes of South Park still available for streaming on HBO Max, Warner Media is refusing to pay tens of millions of dollars in licensing fees owed to South Park Studios for the right to exploit that content.”

    The counterclaim, filed in the New York Supreme Court, alleges that the unpaid fees relate to the 318 “South Park” episodes streaming on HBO Max.

    The more than 300 episodes are from seasons 1 through 26. HBO Max also streams the made-for-television documentary “6 Days to Air: The Making of South Park,” which Paramount mentioned in the doc.

    “To supposedly justify the non-payment, WarnerMedia has accused South Park Studios of violating certain alleged obligations in the Term Sheet,” it added.

    In 2019, WBD paid $500 million for streaming rights to stream 23 seasons of the animated sitcom, as well as three new seasons (seasons 24, 25, and 26) that had yet to air. The deal would last until June 2025.

    In February of this year, WBD filed a court case (Deadline acquired the document) who accused Paramount of breaching the deal, alleging that Paramount stole “South Park” content from HBO Max to set up its own streaming service, Paramount+. To be more specific, WBD said Paramount released new “South Park” specials on Paramount+, which WBD said should have streamed on HBO Max.

    In 2021, MTV Studios from Paramount paid a whopping $900 million in a deal with ‘South Park’ creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone. The deal, which runs through 2027, included six seasons of the show and 14 made-for-streaming movies that would stream exclusively on Paramount+.

    “We believe that Paramount and South Park Digital Studios have embarked on a multi-year scheme of unfair business practices and deceit, blatantly and repeatedly violating our contract, clearly granting HBO Max exclusive streaming rights to its existing library and new content. the popular animated film. comedy South Park,” a WBD spokesperson said in a statement shared with

    “The Warner Bros. argument Discovery that Paramount Global was obligated to provide additional South Park content is baseless and completely unsupported by the parties’ agreement. In addition, it certainly does not justify WBD’s refusal to pay for immensely valuable content, all of which it has received and continues to benefit from,” a Paramount spokesperson said in a statement.

    In the February 2023 lawsuit, WBD stated that the company was bidding for the streaming rights of “South Park” because it had assurances that the three yet-to-be-released seasons would consist of 10 episodes each. However, the company claims that Paramount failed to live up to some episodes.

    WBD added that it is still seeking damages in excess of $200 million “as a result of the defendants’ misconduct,” the lawsuit wrote. According to the company, the new episodes have a higher value than the older ones. That’s why WBD overpaid for the streaming rights.

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