South Park is one of the few television shows that can always remain topical. However, the long-running animated series’ streaming rights have sparked a major lawsuit between two services, HBO Max and Paramount+.

On Friday, Warner Bros. Discovery, the parent company of HBO Max, filed a lawsuit in New York Supreme Court against Paramount Global. The media company is the owner of both Paramount+ and Comedy Central, which has been the television home of South Park for a long time.

According to Rolling Stones, the lawsuit claims that the well-known animated program violated the terms of the $500 million deal that gave HBO Max the exclusive right to stream South Park. South Park’s entire catalog was made exclusively available for HBO Max to stream in 2019, which then included over 23 seasons and 300 episodes. Additionally, HBO Max was set to have exclusive rights to the show’s next three seasons.

However, the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the show’s production, which led to a shortened Season 24 that only had two episodes instead of the usual 10. Season 25, which followed in 2022, had only six episodes. Season 26 has six episodes and is currently airing on Comedy Central and HBO Max.


The lawsuit lists a number of complaints, one of which is South Park’s shortened new seasons. The other significant issue is that Paramount signed a $900 million deal with South Park for over a dozen “specials,” four of which have already premiered on Paramount+.

According to the lawsuit, the Paramount/South Park agreement used “verbal trickery” and “grammatical sleight-of-hand” to label the cartoon content as “specials,” which is Paramount+ property, rather than “episodes,” which would make them exclusive to HBO Max. The claims were, however, refuted by Paramount Global in a statement to Variety. “We believe these claims are without merit and look forward to demonstrating so through the legal process,” a Paramount Global spokesperson said.

“We also note that Paramount continues to adhere to the parties’ contract by delivering new South Park episodes to HBO Max, despite the fact that Warner Bros. Discovery has failed and refused to pay license fees that it owes to Paramount for episodes that have already been delivered, and which HBO Max continues to stream.”

South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone were not included as defendants, but Stone was quoted in the lawsuit stating, “We have f*** you money now” after the Paramount+ deal. The most recent Paramount+ specials were ironically titled South Park: The Streaming Wars given the new lawsuit. Keep an eye on Thirsty For News to get the latest updates regarding the ongoing case.

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Smita Singha Roy

Smita is an engineering student with a passion for learning and exploring new things. She is an enthusiastic and determined individual who enjoys reading newspapers, studying people, history and storytelling. She also likes to watch movies to gain new perspectives and enrich her life experience. Smita is an artist and enjoys cooking and playing the guitar in her free time.

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