Trey Parker and Matt Stone just signed a $900 million deal to keep South Park going through 2027. They have every expectation it will go on beyond that, but this is a pretty big first step. Stone even believes the series will continue long after he and Parker stop making it and he knows exactly how.
Stone gave Bloomberg an interview about their South Park deal on Aug. 8. Parker’s partner revealed they do have an endgame plan for when the time comes.
Trey Parker and Matt Stone never thought ‘South Park’ would last this long
South Park began in 1997 after Parker and Stone’s The Spirit of Christmas short made the Hollywood rounds. They thought it was a lark and expected to be pulled from Comedy Central for their offensive shenanigans. A $900 million deal for seasons 25 – 30 and 14 movies for Paramount+ was never part of their wildest dreams.
“You’re talking to two guys who thought we’d run out of town in ‘97, ‘98, ‘99,” Stone said. “That’s a foundational attitude. We do whatever we want, and they are pretty supportive of it. And it works most of the time. We’re the luckiest guys in TV in that way. We don’t get notes. The only notes come from legal. We haven’t gotten a note since Season 3.”
Matt Stone expects Viacom will take of ‘South Park’ one day
Bloomberg asked Stone if he’s surprised Viacom hasn’t tried to buy out his and Parker’s interest in South Park. To their surprise, Stone said they’d be willing to negotiate at some point.
“Honestly, talk to them,” we’re happy to talk about that whenever they want to talk about it,” Stone said. “We’re still in business, still growing it together. We’re not anxious to end the show. But someday we will sell that interest. That’s what we’re aiming for.”
For now, Trey Parker and Matt Stone will keep working with Viacom
For now, Parker and Stone remain committed to South Park through 2027. That still doesn’t mean they’ll only work on South Park. As in the past, they have other projects in the works concurrently.
“Viacom has been a good partner through thick and thin,” Stone said. “We are privateers. We are independent but very tied to one place. The old days of Philippe [Dauman], they probably should have given us a bigger deal to do more stuff in-house. They just didn’t think that way back then. The way the company was run under him was pretty sh—y. They let us go do The Book of Mormon. The money from South Park has allowed us to go build that and other things.”
Stone credits their lawyer for getting them such a good deal for streaming rights, which began with moving South Park from Hulu to HBO Max.
“At the time it was our lawyer Kevin Morris,” Stone said. “It’s almost so ancient to think about someone in the room saying, ‘If it’s online, you can have that.’ Can you imagine that? That really happened. We’re proud of the fact that we said, ‘Let’s put the show online and build that audience. If we can own half that, let’s just do that.’ Our fan base was the kind who would be on a computer and BitTorrent something. There was all this piracy. Our theory was people pirate it, let’s put it online. We built an online audience that was complementary.”