Paramount+ made a splashy entrance onto the U.K. streaming battlefield on Monday with a big-budget launch in the British capital.
Hosted by Graham Norton, the event in London’s newly opened Outernet development, part of what Paramount has billed as its “biggest and most ambitious marketing campaign in the U.K.,” saw a slew of A-list stars and A-list series and films wheeled out ahead of the platform’s launch in the U.K. and Ireland on Wednesday.
Among the shows given a hero’s welcome were 1883, Halo, The Offer, Tulsa King, Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, The Man Who Fell to Earth, George and Tammy and The First Lady, while names including Kevin Costner, Jessica Chastain, Viola Davis, David Oyelowo, Michael Shannon, Michelle Pfeiffer and Gillian Anderson came on stage to give a wave and showcase their latest wares (sometimes via a solitary, tightly-scripted line).
Arguably the biggest cheer was reserved for Sylvester Stallone, the only guest to ignore the autocue entirely and go wildly off message as he introduced Tulsa King, a script he joked arrived when he was sulking at home and when, at 75 years old, he was going to be “fucking dead soon.”
The launch event came the same day as Paramount+ unveiled a seven-strong slate of titles from countries including Germany, Italy, France and Mexico, alongside a pledge to commission 150 international originals by 2025.
The Paramount subscription VOD service previously unveiled a commitment to greenlighting 50 international scripted originals in 2022, with titles announced in the past including the likes of Sexy Beast (from the U.K.), The Chemistry of Death (Germany), Bosé (Spain), Fallaci (Italy), Impact (France) and Los Enviados (The Envoys) (Mexico), among others.
The platform, which launched in the U.S. and has amassed almost 40 million subscribers, will be available to U.K. customer for £6.99 ($8.60) per month (by comparison, a standard Netflix subscription is £10, or $13.50), but will be made free to those already signed up to Sky Cinema.