Paramount Just Pulled A Yellowstone Spinoff From Streaming

By Michileen Martin | 1 month ago


Yellowstone fans, prepare to be angry, confused, or both. In spite of assurances to the contrary, apparently one of the spin-off series will not be a Paramount+ original and will release initially on the Paramount network instead, just as the home series does. The spin-off in question is 6666, which will be set in the eponymous legendary ranch in the present day.

Deadline and others reported the surprise move on Wednesday. No precise reason was given for the change to the Yellowstone spin-off, however the outlet managed to get a perfectly vague response from unnamed Paramount sources. Apparently., the studio chose the move of 6666 from streaming to its cable network in order to “maximize the release strategy,” whatever that means.

The current Yellowstone status quo is already a little weird and confusing. The home series, Yellowstone, releases new episodes on the cable Paramount network. Because of a deal hammered out before Paramount+ existed, older episodes of the show stream on Peacock. The first spin-off, 1883, is a Paramount+ original with new episodes releasing on the streaming platform. Now 6666 will release on the cable network though presumably, unless it’s somehow grandfathered in to the home Yellowstone series deal, older episodes will eventually move to Paramount+. If we compare this situation to, say, how Paramount has handled its growing number of Star Trek spin-offs — with new episodes of all five of its current series premiering on Paramount+ — it’s tough to understand why the studio isn’t doing the same with Yellowstone. Star Trek fans know where to find their new episodes. Yellowstone fans need a map.

Considering some of Paramount’s recent financial history, it’s tempting to assume this has less to do with maximizing a release strategy and more to do with appeasing investors. In February Paramount made an investor presentation that included, among other things, the announcement of a $6 billion investment in Paramount+ and a long list of new streaming projects. Far from having the impact the studio hoped for, Paramount stock took a steep nosedive. The move of one of the next Yellowstone spin-offs from streaming to cable could be Paramount’s way of showing investors it’s not putting all of its eggs into one basket.

6666 is arguably the spin-off we have the least information about. While the official synopsis for the Yellowstone spin-off says the titular ranch was founded “when Comanches still ruled West Texas,” it seems that the series itself will take place in the present day. Through pretty vaguely defined ways, 6666 will highlight the ranch as “where world-class cowboys are born and made.”

Serving as much happier news for Yellowstone fans was yesterday’s reveal that Harrison Ford and Helen Mirren had been recruited to star in the spin-off 1932. It’s particularly surprising when you consider that only a month ago Deadline broke the news that Ford was breaking his career-long avoidance of television by joining Jason Segel for his upcoming Apple TV+ series Shrinking. In contrast, there has so far been no casting news about 6666.