Paramount Claims It Wants To Be ‘Creator-Friendly’ in Skydance Merger

Phone with skydance and paramount in the background
Paramount Skydance Merger Progressive Ground/Shutterstock T. Schneider/Shutterstock

Entertainment conglomerate Paramount has merged with media titan Skydance Media to create the “New Paramount” — and it looks like creators are front and center in the new company’s branding. 

In a consortium on July 8, Skydance head Dave Ellison held a presentation for investors. There, he emphasized the need to make Paramount a “creator-friendly” environment. 

“We live in an environment that is so competitive,” he said. “Our belief is that you can’t be a ‘B+’ anymore. You have to be an ‘A’ … I think when you create that culture of fostering creativity and setting a high bar, our hope is that the most talented people in the world will want to call Paramount home.”

Jeff Shell, the incoming president of Paramount, then joined the conversation, emphasizing that “creators, like everyone else, want to be at a place that’s stable.”

“All the financial things that we’re doing with the company, injection of cash, de-levering and everything, while they don’t directly affect the creative process that David was just talking about, they make somebody much more comfortable that this is going to be a stable place,” he said. “Some people are hungry for Paramount to be a place that’s creator-friendly again.”

Can creators trust Paramount?

While this all sounds great in theory, can creators, in practice, trust Paramount? Firstly, the entertainment giant recently hired a bank to explore the sale of the creator convention it owns, VidCon, which doesn’t exactly scream “creator-friendly.”

Paramount also wasn’t exactly fighting in creators’ corner during the writers and actors strikes in 2023. Speaking to Deadline at the time, an exec claimed that Paramount, along with other leading studios like Amazon and Warner Bros, became determined to “break” the Writers Guild of America.

“The endgame is to allow things to drag on until union members start losing their apartments and losing their houses,” they said. 

Naturally, despite it being a year on, we’re sure these words are still ringing in some creators’ ears. There’s a long way to go if Paramount wants to build bridges.

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