Television animation was taken to another level when South Park debuted. The show has become a touchstone, something that influenced society when it came out. It was a bit of a provocateur and poked the bear culturally.
That was almost three decades ago, and the show has been going strong ever since. It was created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, who recently signed a deal with ViacomCBS worth $900 million. But where does that money go, and what will they do to change South Park to fit the size of the deal and the expectations?
The simple answer is that it goes into making more content. The deal ensures they make 14 new South Park movies and six more seasons of the show, but it's not all that easy.
In a recent interview with Bloomberg, Stone elaborated on where South Park was headed. Right now they have an HBO Max deal that houses old episodes and some new specials, but this new deal runs concurrent to that.
"The things on Paramount+ will be South Park movies, streaming movies," Stone said. "We did a South Park movie in ‘99 and we’ve never done another one because the show has been so satisfying. We like the way we’ve been able to do the show. We’re like a punk band—a little rough around the edges and get out fast. Now we’re older, and the idea of what streaming movies can be is pretty promising."
With all these new deals and huge amounts of money, people wonder if the guys will retire or move on, but Stone called themselves "serial entrepreneurs" who are excited to use the money and freedom their deals give them to explore all their wildest dreams. Stone also talked about where their artistic vision would take the show in the future.
"We’ve been rich for a long time," Stone said. "We have nice houses and cars. Even this giant deal won’t change my day-to-day. I’m not going to buy a new watch. We’re a media company. We use the proceeds from this to invest. These are multi-year projects we invested a bunch of money in. We have a South Park 3D video game, release date unknown. We’re doing deep fakes. We have a studio with a dozen people who are deep fake artists. We’re working on a little more of this deep fake movie we’re trying to piece together. We have a horror movie. A musical. I think we’re really for the first time going to bring Tegridy Weed into real life. We are gunning for this restaurant that’s just been abused in Colorado. It’s Trey’s dream to revamp Casa Bonita."
With all that said, this feels like an exciting time for their creative process. They can do anything, and they fear no one. Streaming is interesting because they don't have to focus on being commercial—they can tell the best stories they want and focus on any bigger goal with the show and with newer projects. This makes me very excited about the next chapter.
Let me know what you think in the comments.