CNBC: Trek Worth $4B…Paramount, Frakes, Spiner & Brooks talk Trek Bling

wentworthcnbc.JPGCNBC’s ‘On the Money‘ show took a trip to the Vegas Con to see just how much money there was in Star Trek. Their conclusion…A LOT. They estimate that the franchise has been worth $4 Billion for Paramount.

A recent unnamed source from Paramount has caused a bit of a stir with his not too favorable comments to IESB about the Trek Franchise, but CBS Paramount VP John Wentworth goes on the record with CNBC:

Star Trek is certainly more than a show, more than a movie. It is more than an auction, it’s more than a theme park, collectively it is just the most successful franchise I’ve ever seen in entertainment

Stars Weigh In on Trek Bling
Jonathan Frakes (TNG: Riker), Brent Spiner (TNG: Data), and Avery Brooks (DS9: Sisko) all spoke to CNBC on the endurance of the Trek brand and its potential for making money

Spiner: “It’s unbelievable, it’s a huge business. Look around, people are selling body parts. You can sell anything here and it’s enormous”

Frakes: “Doubtless it is Gene Roddenberry’s vision of the future, which was one of compassion, of a world of the 24th century in which there was no racism and there was no sexism”

Brooks: “This idea of merchandising and video games, it’s never ending. I will bet you that the business of Star Trek will be going on long after we have left”

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Guest star goldmine
And it isnt just the big stars cashing in. CNBC pointed out that Trek has been what they call ‘a gold mine’ for bit players who have appeared on Star Trek a few times or even just once. They cite the cash they reap from autographs and appearences around the world. Perhaps these people should have paid Paramount for that one guest spot for all the rewards it has brought in.

one day at scale = decades of cashing in at Trek conventions

Living long and pro$pering
Although Trek convention organizer Creative has scaled back some events recently, it appears they are not struggling. “It’s a multi-million dollar enterprise in terms of producing it, but we certainly get the return on it. It’s a profitable venture,” says co-founder Adam Malin. That is no surprise since ticket packages cost upwards of $1000 and that’s before travel and buying a single Klingon Bat’Leth. CNBC also report that the Vegas Hilton’s Star Trek Experience makes as much money as a casino. There has been talk about the future of the experience after Paramount sold it along with Paramount Parks, but our sources tell us that the lease is has years to go and there are plans to expand.

Abrams’ Trek seen as bringing back the cash
It appears that JJ Abrams has brought back a lot of credibility to the franchise, at least to the media. CNBC cite his credentials with Lost and MI3 as being a big plus for Trek’s future. Entertainment Weekly’s Ben Syetkey had this to say about Abrams’ Trek:

It’s going to be a completely different sort of take on it, respectful of the show’s roots and reinvented in a way that hasn’t been seen before. That could bring the phenomenon back, big-time


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