Paramount Merges With Skydance, Star Trek’s Future About To Change?

By Douglas Helm | Updated

After months of negotiating, Paramount Global has made the call to merge with Skydance, ending the company’s long-going Redstone era. Skydance founder David Ellison is taking on the role of chairman and CEO of the newly merged studio, while former NBCUniversal CEO Jeff Shell is taking on the role of President. As one of the biggest entertainment studios in the world, Paramount has quite a few franchises that might be affected by this merger, and Star Trek fans should be the first in line to wonder what’s next for the franchise.

Current Projects Still Moving Forward

There are certainly a few ways the Paramount Skydance merger could affect the Star Trek franchise going forward. Looking at the full report could give us some clues as to what direction it could go. For one, the current leadership told employees that things would be “business as usual” until the deal closes, so it seems likely any short-term plans will remain in place. That means things like Starfleet Academy and the upcoming Michelle Yeoh-led Section 31 movies should still be on track. 

Back To The Big Screen?

Shell, who also is part of the private equity firm RedBird Capital Partners involved in the deal, said, “It’s a new Paramount, it’s not just a catchphrase,” about the Skydance merger. It’s possible that new leadership could mean a new direction for major IPs like Star Trek. Perhaps that new direction could include a bigger focus on big-screen efforts, leading to a fast-tracking of the fourth film in the Kelvin Timeline that has seemingly been in development stasis for years.

A New Era For Star Trek

As for Ellison, who will presumably have a big hand in the Trek franchise going forward, he said of the Paramount Skydance merger, “The key thesis behind this transaction is our desire to inject Skydance as a pure play content company to double down on Paramount’s prowess as one of the world-class storytelling enterprises.”

In other words, it seems like Ellison is keen to double down on the popular IP that Paramount has amassed over the years. With a statement like this, it would seem like Ellison would want to lean even harder on the Star Trek franchise rather than dial anything back.

Everything Could Change

star trek khan

If Ellison is indeed looking to make content a top priority after the Paramount Skydance merger is completed, then Star Trek would be the ideal place to start. The sci-fi franchise rivals some of the biggest franchises out there in popularity. There are quite a few interesting projects in the works for the Star Trek franchise currently, so hopefully, Ellison wouldn’t put the kibosh on any of those going forward.

On the flip side of the coin, big mergers like Paramount and Skydance can sometimes spell trouble for beloved franchises like Star Trek. After all, these major deals see increased pressure on the new leadership to provide profits to the shareholders. While Shell touted Ellison as a creative, saying, “It’s been a long time since a creative executive ran one of the big Hollywood companies,” there’s always a chance the financial pressures could lead to decisions the fanbase finds unfavorable. 

Fans Hope This Isn’t A Warner Bros Discovery Repeat

star trek lower decks

At this point, there’s still a chance that the Paramount and Skydance merger could fall apart, as the merger still needs to go through regulatory approval and a 45-day “go-shop” period where Paramount can entertain other offers. However, it does seem like both parties are pretty eager to push this deal through this time around. We’ll have to wait and see if it’s good news for the Star Trek franchise or another “Warner Bros Discovery axing all of your favorite shows” situation.