‘Star Trek: Lower Decks’ Headed To Amazon Prime In UK, Europe, Australia & More Countries [UPDATED]

The wait for many fans outside of North America is over. The adult animated comedy Star Trek: Lower Decks is finally going overseas, with a January debut on Amazon Prime Video.

Lower Decks headed to Amazon

News of the long anticipated international deal for Star Trek: Lower Decks broke on The Hollywood Reporter in the wee hours . According to THR, the animated Trek comedy will debut on Amazon Prime Video in the U.K., Europe, Australia, New Zealand,  Japan, India—”and more,” according to Amazon. The entire 10-episode first season will launch on January 22.

The report didn’t mention when or where Lower Decks will be made available in other markets, including Latin America. We will report any updates when new information is available.

Star Trek: Lower Decks key art for Amazon (abroad) - TrekMovie

UPDATE: New Amazon poster art for Lower Decks

Lower Decks wrapped up its first season in October on CBS All Access in the USA, and Sci-Fi Channel in Canada. Production on season two is currently underway, and it is expected to debut sometime in 2021.

Lower Decks creator and showrunner Mike McMahan—who recently assured international fans their wait will soon be over—was happy to share the news on social media early this morning.

Amazon is also the international home of Star Trek: Picard. Netflix remains the exclusive streaming service outside North America for Star Trek: Discovery. There is no word yet for international distribution for Star Trek: Strange New Worlds, which is expected to go into production in early 2021.

UPDATE: Watch the Amazon trailer

Amazon has released its own trailer for the series.

 

 


Keep up with all the Star Trek: Lower Decks news and analysis at TrekMovie.com.

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Oh this can’t be true..all those experts on YouTube said Amazon passed on the international rights for this show…! ;) This is great news btw – UK viewer right here.

Last edited 1 month ago by SBais

Surely, CBS actually paid Amazon to take the show, just to hide how much of a failure Lower Decks was. (In case it’s not clear this is sarcasm)
Happy for everybody who gets the chance to finally see it. Just 5 more weeks…

it is great news but clearly something was amiss with the negotiations or we’d have got it the day after it aired in North America.

I doubt it. More likely scenario is this: Discovery needed more time for post production so All Access rushed Lower Decks to air first without its international agreements in place. ViacomCBS did not like the idea of then having both shows on at the same time internationally, so they made deals for it to air a couple weeks after Discovery ended on Netflix.

Every time I’ve asked a poster for receipts of his or her wild claims about Netflix and Amazon not getting enough bang for their buck, I have been ignored. I think it’s just hot air, and Amazon coming back to them for seconds is far more conclusive evidence to back that up.

I’ve not made any wild claims @Ian nor do I subscribe to any of these YouTube channels that bitterly attack the new shows and spread nothing but doom and gloom. I merely observed that something is clearly amiss with the negotiations. The reason I believe this is because there is no economic advantage to your suggestion that Viacom ‘did not like the idea of having both shows on at the same time internationally’. Of course I understand why they wouldn’t want to do this domestically because Star Trek is their only real draw so they’re going to want to spread that content strategically to reduce churn but Netflix and Amazon have a conveyer belt of original material. By intentionally withholding LDS  Viacom would essentially be devaluing their product as their clients would be well aware the content will have been pirated and widely distributed through illegal channels for months. You have to assume therefore that Viacom has discounted a product that they couldn’t sell at launch. That’s not a wild conspiracy theory it’s speculation based on basic economic principles.

Now none of this means that I think there’s no future for Trek, or that all the shows are going to be cancelled and with Kurtzman hung drawn and quartered in the middle of Yonge-Dundas Square but it does suggest that they did have difficulties selling this show internationally. That could be for a number of reasons, I just don’t think that spreading out the release of their original content on competitor platforms would be near the top of that list.

this isn’t an exclusive list but I’d say the following are more credible reasons why:

  • Exclusivity – There’s been some suggestion that ViacomCBs wanted to negotiate none exclusive contracts so that they would have their flagship shows available when they roll out Paramount+ in new markets. This makes sense we know that they have global ambitions for Paramount+. I don’t know how successful this venture will be but any streaming platform that can give me first run access to all the new Star Trek shows has got my money. Nevertheless I still maintain that CBS would have made more profit if they’d have been able to negotiate distribution deals that allowed for more synchronised domestic and international launches.
  • Brexit- I’m no expert on international contract law so I won’t say too much on this but certainly it’s possible that negotiations in Europe and the UK were hampered by the uncertainty surrounding any potential post Brexit deal. As I understand it the streaming rights for Europe are negotiated with the entire bloc. Therefore if a deal was to be agreed that involved the UK falling in line with various EU legislation then it’s possible streaming rights could remain linked whereas in a hard Brexit scenario Britain would be a completely separate market.
  • Demand – Clearly there’s a market for Trek but perhaps shows like Picard and Discovery have underperformed against expectations and now the likes of Netflix and Amazon are revising how much they’re prepared to pay. I’m pretty sure that if HBO were pimping their new GOT show around the world Amazon and Netflix would snap their hands off for first run rights even if they didn’t have complete exclusivity. I’m sure the streaming giants still consider Trek a valuable brand but maybe they were happy to wait for the show as they could pay less and then release it in a traditional binge format.

Well I’ve ‘come back for seconds’ and defended my ‘hot air’ so now I’m challenging you to do the same Ian. Could you please explain to me why you think that Viacom would think it beneficial to spread out the roll out of their shows on competitor platforms? And could you also tell me if you honestly believe that Amazon have payed as much to stream the show in 2021 as they would have to have released it weekly in tandem with North America?

First of all, you took my post as accusing you of spouting hot air and making a wild claim. I should have said “other posters” and saved you from getting in a tizzy. Enough posters who dislike Kurtzman Trek come on and make authoritative claims about discontent at the streamers without being able to back them up with facts. Your post was an opinion, not a claim.

It is documented that Lower Decks was rushed to the market in North America. Trailer and release happened within a month due to Discovery being delayed. Negotiating an agreement with an independent streamer quickly is not the same as dumping it on the streaming outlet you own outright. So it’s kind of irrelevant if Amazon would have paid more to stream it concurrently – there well may not have been time to make a deal to everyone’s satisfaction. Does that mean ViacomCBS might have held out for more than they eventually got and Amazon wasn’t as enthusiastic? Sure. But again, there’s no actual evidence Netflix or Amazon have buyer’s remorse, including in all your supposition above. The reverse is true for mine.

There is a financial incentive to spread out which outlets ViacomCBS sells it Trek product to. Hulu, All Access, Netflix and Amazon have rights to legacy Trek. ViacomCBS constantly sells films and series to every streaming outlet, it clearly has experience with negotiating and knows what it can get with this approach and what an exclusivity contract would mean to them conversely. Stoking a bidding war between Netflix and Amazon is smart business.

Just as All Access refuses to overlap its new Trek shows, there is less financial incentive for a streamer to air a new Trek show at the exact same time as a competitor is airing another new one. It could easily be in a contract with either streamer that they require an agreement to be the only streamer showing new Trek episodes during that period.

Your Brexit theory is also reasonable.

I think we can leave it at that.

Thank you for clarifying that your ‘hot air’ comment was not being directed at me Ian. However, you’ve not really answered my questions. When you challenged my opinion that something was amiss with the negotiations you put forward your own counter argument that was underpinned by 3 assumptions.

  1. That the short notice decision to bring forward Lower Decks release date left Viacom CBS with insufficient time to conclude international distribution deals.
  2. That this would have resulted in Lower Decks and Discovery airing at the same time in some markets.
  3. ViacomCBS would not like the idea of the two shows airing at the same time,

I think these are flawed assumptions. Star Trek Discovery was announced in November 2015 with the international distribution rights being revealed 8 months later in July 2016. Star Trek Picard was confirmed to be in development in August 2018 we had official word that Amazon would be airing it overseas by May 2019. In both cases we didn’t have a release date confirmed but we knew that they’d be airing internationally within one day of their North American release.

So we have precedent here that it’s not standard practice for CBS to leave these kind of negotiations to the last minute. Now Lower Decks was first announced in October 2018 it aired in North America between the 6th of August and the 8th of October 2020 and they an announced the international streaming rights on the 17th of December 2020. Does nothing about this seem amiss to you? Do you not honestly believe that ViacomCBS have been actively trying to sell this show for sometime and have had ample opportunity to have negotiated deals that ensured that Star Trek markets outside of North America got the chance to view this new material at the time it was released? As I said to you in my previous reply these issues may very well have been outside of Viacom’s control, I’m not necessarily saying that it’s all their fault but I do believe there is reasonable grounds for concluding that negotiations did not run smoothly.

To your credit you did try to answer my question as to why you thought it would not be of benefit to Viacom to have Discovery airing at the same time as Lower Decks overseas. You speculated that perhaps Netflix would stipulate in their contract that no other new Star Trek show could be broadcast concurrently with their releases of Discovery. That sounds like plausible conjecture but that would be Netflix that was benefitting from that arrangement. It wouldn’t be an advantage to Viacom it would be an obstacle that they seemingly didn’t pass. Remember I didn’t ask you to mitigate what was amiss with the negotiations I asked you to demonstrate that nothing was amiss with the negotiations because this was the observation of mine that you challenged.

“Could you please explain to me why you think that Viacom would think it beneficial to spread out the roll out of their shows on competitor platforms? And could you also tell me if you honestly believe that Amazon have payed as much to stream the show in 2021 as they would have to have released it weekly in tandem with North America?“

Having 5 months of uninterrupted Star Trek on All Access in 2020 and minimizing the gap between that and Picard was clearly the main goal of ViacomCBS. There were no other shows on the channel to entice new subscribers or retain existing ones.

They achieved their goal with a last minute schedule shift, while maintaining a rich deal with Netflix, and negotiating a new one for Lower Decks with Amazon that would not affect any potential clauses about exclusivity windows either streamer might reasonably have. Considering Netflix subsidizes just about all of Discovery’s production budget, not annoying them by selling a show to a competitor while Discovery is on makes perfect sense to me.

Ditto giving Amazon an exclusive show that may be late but has the benefit of decent fan buzz to help it, something the show didn’t have at first with its mixed reviews and had to build over the months. Not having Lower Decks air concurrently with the US disadvantages international fans who wanted to see it and don’t pirate tv, but day and date tv and film releases are still not always the norm. Plenty of shows and movies still get staggered releases even without last minute scheduling changes. I’ve already stated that maybe that left some money on the table when it came to what Amazon paid for it, but I don’t think that matters – what drove the negotiations was ViacomCBS’ scheduling decisions for All Access, and they achieved their goal of having their 23 weeks without having to wait for Discovery to be finished. Paramount+ is on the record as a paramount priority for the company, and keeping it healthy with new content outweighs anything else. They seem to have done what they set out to do.

‘Considering Netflix subsidizes just about all of Discovery’s production budget, not annoying them by selling a show to a competitor while Discovery is on makes perfect sense to me.’

Ian that may make perfect sense to you but it doesn’t to me. It doesn’t address why it took 26 months from the announcement of the show to the reveal of an international distributor and why this occurred 4 months after the series had already premiered. They announced Discovery for a network partner 8 months after revealing the show was in development and this was 14 months before the show aired. They announced Picard was in development 9 months prior to the reveal that Amazon would be their international partner which was a full 8 months prior to the release of the show.

Do you not see a pattern? There’s a clear degree of consistency here as ViacomCBS clearly managed to negotiate deals in comfortably under 12 months from the reveal of the shows. They managed to do so even though they only had launch windows and not actual release dates and they achieved all of this on average 11 months prior to the series premiers and yet you insist that a decision to bring forward the release of LDS by 13 measly weeks left them with insufficient time to finalise a contract but that nothing is amiss with this, that everything is hunky dory and their could possibly be a drop off in demand for their product.

You can’t blame coronavirus for all of this. LDS was announced a mere 2 months after Picard which they revealed an international partner for when COVID-19 was a mere twinkling in the common cold’s eye. You can’t dismiss it by saying that selling Picard was the networks priority and that they wanted to sort that out first. We’re talking about massive multinational corporations, they can and do deal with multiple negotiations concurrently! You can of course invent contract stipulations that we have no evidence of and then try to paint them as being advantageous like you did when I asked you to name a benefit to your conjecture that ‘ViacomCBS did not like the idea of then having both shows on at the same time internationally’ but you’re still not coming close to disproving my position that something was clearly amiss with the negotiations for them not to have overseas agreements in place to air the show in tandem with the North American release. In fact your still not coming close to providing a benefit as to why you believe Viacom would not like the idea of Discovery and LDS airing concurrently in international markets as your hypothetical contract clause would favour the buyer and disadvantage the seller in negotiations with other partners. If such a clause existed then of course they’d go along with it but given the timescales we’ve discussed it still seems reasonable to conclude that this shouldn’t have prevented them announcing an international partner long before the shows North American release even if it still prevented a synchronised release of LDS

As I said Ian I am not a hater. I’ve enjoyed to varying degrees every Star Trek show that’s been released, I was hugely disappointed not to be able to watch LDS at the time of launch and I’m immensely excited to finally get the opportunity to watch. When Paramount+ launches in the UK I’ll be first in line to sign but just because I like a particular product and brand doesn’t mean I can’t be objective about something. It’s okay that you’re very positive about ViacomCBS and it’s perfectly fine for anybody to speculate scenarios that corroborate their views but in my opinion people still need to be open to the reverse or they risk losing credibility.

K. Based on their corporate spending and posturing, All Access/Paramount+ is clearly their priority to me, I really don’t see evidence to the contrary. It’s entirely logical to me that they had to upend negotiations for international rights in order to serve that end. It’s nothing to do with being positive about them or biased as you seem to think, it’s established behavior in line with how other companies are also treating their product and streaming outlets. With AT&T sacrificing its entire Warner Bros 2021 slate on the altar of HBO Max, ViacomCBS propping up All Access without finishing or having to renegotiate its LDS Amazon deal seems pretty reasonable.

But that’s the end of this for me. Obviously neither of us was privy to the negotiations, so we’re wasting each other’s time at this point with TL;DR posts. Later.

Last edited 1 month ago by Ian

Again you’re missing the point. If you believe that launching LDS overseas months after it has been screened in America then was what they wanted then you would simply list benefits for this and not excuses for the failure. If on the other hand you accept that the the outcome would not have been ideal but you feel there were mitigating circumstances then you have to ask yourself why you were even arguing the point in the first place. You could have simply said that you agree that it wasn’t the most desirable outcome but… and then list your justifications. Anyway, like you say the conversations not going anywhere, you’ve had your final say on the matter and you can consider this mine.

Corinthian7, as Ian has noted, it’s been confirmed in several places, including by McMahan himself that the original plan was for 23 weeks of Star Trek with Discovery S3 preceding Lower Decks S2.

Avoiding overlap isn’t just about reducing the churn on subscription cancellations and renewals in the US, it’s also about commanding a better price for advertising on CBSAA. You will note that even Amazon is moving away from dropping limited series and seasons all at once, and instead has introduced weekly episode drops.

What’s driving this? While Nielsen now has ratings for streaming on TVs with boxes, streaming on all other devices (phones, tablets, computers) can only be captured by Parrot Analytics demand analysis. Parrot Analytics uses data such as the number of social media comments to estimate demand.

Interestingly Parrot Analytics’ demand rankings aren’t far off Nielsen’s streaming ratings, but they are available the next week and Nielsen takes a month. What Parrot Analytics shows though is that a show will have a halo effect across the franchise. Lower Decks release affected demand for TNG and other series in the ViacomCBS library. So, it’s affecting advertising sales for more than itself.

Last, I agree that the new ViacomCBS policy to retain rights to show all of its own shows on its own platforms may have been a negotiating issue. However, investors had such a negative reaction to Baklish’s statement shortly after the merger that they planned to produce for other streamers while developing their own that there was no way that a deal for Lower Decks could give Netflix or Amazon exclusive rights.

Last edited 1 month ago by TG47

As always TG47 your knowledge and understanding of how American television works is both fascinating and insightful, I didn’t even realise that CBSAA is ad supported.

Regarding the 23 week plan for Trek I am aware of that but I don’t believe that the switching of the release order is a sufficient reason for not having the international distribution agreed in time for the launch of LDS. I won’t go into too much detail on this point because I have just addressed it above in a reply to Ian.

Regarding the issue of exclusive rights I do want to clarify that I wasn’t suggesting that Viacom should agree to this. On the contrary if they truly have global ambitions for Paramount+ then it goes without saying that they need all of their new Star Trek shows to be available at launch. I just don’t think this was enough of a sticking point to justify not getting a deal done in time for the North American release of the show.

Last edited 1 month ago by Corinthian7

Obviously they lowered the price, and probably by a huge margin.

This is the streaming series sale equivalent of the $1.99 DVD container at Wal-Mart.

How is that obvious? I see no credible articles saying Netflix or Amazon have buyer’s remorse.

This is probably when it was supposed to happen anyway. Lower Decks and Disco were released in reverse order due to the pandemic

Fantastic news! Can’t wait :)

Finally. I hope the rest of the world will be included soon as well. Those delays in availability only help to increase piracy. I understand that it’s additional work to add overdubbing and subtitles for other languages, but it would be better if they would make the original English version available right away and then only release other languages later.

FINALLY!

Title nitpicking: Actually the UK is, has been and will always remain a part of Europe, no matter how many times proponents of the European Union want to insinuate both of these are tied and a country outside the union could not possibly prosper IN Europe (spoiler alert: many do). Just sayin’…. Carry on!

How funny–I just posted the same thing.

I said the same thing!

Europe is just short for mainland Europe. Which includes Norway who is not a member of the EU but is getting Lower Decks.

If you want get annoyed then you can get annoyed over the republic of Ireland being considered part of Amazon UK when the republic of Ireland is a sovereign, independent nation that is part of the EU.

But you know what let’s leave politics and celebrate a good news Trek story

VS, the British should consider how the edgy nationalism shown (mainly by the English) in the whole Brexit dialogue sends a signal to the rest of the world about how Britons don’t see themselves as European.

As someone with a UK citizenship looking at this across the pond, it’s definitely sending a “we’re Britons not Europeans” message whatever the geographers say.

The UK (sadly in my opinion) has left the European Union though meaning they are different markets so just saying Europe in the headline would be not only be ignoring one of biggest Trek markets it would be misleading.

The United Kingdom is part of Europe. That hasn’t changed and never will, regardless of Brexit, which was just a political split. The U.K. has withdrawn from the E.U., not Europe, since geographically it has no way to do so without there being a massive cataclysm. :)

Last edited 1 month ago by His Name Is Rios

But when it is spoken that something happens inside or outside of the EU than it is 100% the EU that is meant. Because it is a legal question. The geographical position of one country doesnt matter at all.
If you release, the question is where to pay taxes…. wait a moment, bad example, they propably dont pay taxes anyway… ;)

Last edited 1 month ago by jako

The UK belongs in Europe. The European Union is a political project. The UK and EU relationship is broken forever. Brexit was a mistake.

Unless a cataclysm happens that moves it to a different location.

Last edited 1 month ago by Faze Ninja

The UK belongs to the people of the countries that make up the UK. In or out of the European Union.

The UK is and always will be part of the continent Europe. Same way any non eu European country is.

In this context Europe is just shorthand for mainland Europe.

Welcome to a Canadians pain when the US is just referred to as America. They are the United States of America. There are a bunch of other countries that are part of America (North and South).

Is it possible to have Lower Decks be on Amazon Prime is the US? Or is it some rights issue?

No Lower Decks is on CBS All Access in the US.

Only if you buy All Access as a Prime channel add-on. Trek is All Access/Paramount+’s golden goose for now, until they outgrow it. Much like Voyager was all UPN had until they found the WWE.

Yaaayyy, finally!

Amazon is a safe bet. Netflix is disappointed for sure.

Amazon is a safe bet. Netflix is disappointed for sure.

LOL. Sure they are.

Star Trek fans in Europe and the UK now have the chance to see this gem of the show.

Can’t wait for season 2!

Americans and Canada had a early head start. Now international viewers cans be in the fun too.

By the way, the UK is part of Europe. Brexit doesn’t change its geographical location.
The EU and Europe are not the same thing. That will never change. Unless something catastrophic happened.

I’m currently paying for Netflix to watch the excellent third season of Discovery. I paid for Amazon to watch Picard but unsubscribed as I couldn’t afford to keep everything on particularly as job security isn’t great due to COVID-19. I’d also love to do Disney Plus as I really want to see the Star Wars shows. I’d love to watch Lower Decks but I can’t afford yet another subscription. I’ll have to pass and hope it comes on DVD at some stage

I feel for you.

Streaming is just duplicating the high cost of premium cable at this point.

I suspect the DVDs will be out not long after the series streams on Amazon. The pattern for the other new series has been to release the previous seasons of DVDs well before the next season streams. It’s a kind of marketing.

We’re fortunate in Canada to be able to get all the Star Trek content in once place, and since BellMedia has both a premium cable and an OTT streaming option, we can do it either way. I don’t think we’d be able to justify the cost of premium cable if we didn’t have kids though.

Regarding a DVD release of Lower Decks: Picard isn’t out on DVD or Bluray in Europe, yet, even though it’s been out in the US for months. It will only be released here early next year. Someone pointed out that the Amazon deal may include a one-year exclusivity window (which is why it is only released on disk a year after its streaming debut). If the same is true for Lower Decks, it may take a long time before Lower Decks is released on disk here.

That’s not great. Thanks for noting it though DIGINON.

I suspect that ViacomCBS sees the DVDs as both a revenue source and a way to hook people in for future subscriptions.

The calculation would be different for Netflix and Amazon though. A one year exclusivity period is fairly harsh for the regular format DVDs. The wait on the blue rays is much longer in North America.

You could wait for Discovery season 3 to end, cancel your Netflix subscription and switch over to Amazon for Lower Decks. As I understand it they are releasing the whole season of Lower Decks at once so you may be able to binge it during a free trial.

Finally good news. Thx, for that.

About time. Shame I have aleady taken a chance in buying the DVD in hope it will play on my PS5. Saying that, if it doesn’t play then it’s still a great addition to my Trek collection!

I’m glad LDS is finally getting an international release on Amazon and it also sounds like it will all be released at once. So double good news! You’re getting a great show! :)

But I do have to say for all the (early) complaints about putting Star Trek on All Access is now looking like a godsend for people who live in America. There is never any doubt when and where the shows are coming and it’s nice every show will just be on one channel like Star Wars will all be on Disney+ domestic and international. People were so jealous that Netflix was getting Discovery when it first premiered but now it doesn’t sound as great as before since Netflix isn’t begging for the newer shows. AFAIK, season 2 of Short Treks still hasn’t been released there yet. Or did that finally happen?

Hopefully all the other shows outside of America will land on Netflix and Prime and don’t spread things out too much.

Given how hungry the international streaming market is for new \shows, you can bet that CBS had a massively inflated view of the international market for this. I would be surprised if they got even 40% of what they were originally asking form from this market last summer.

The market for this show is hardcore Berman-era fans. It’s simply not a franchise-grower like DSC or Picard.

Last edited 1 month ago by Methusalah

Maybe, but I also think Lower Decks is a great way to introduce the franchise to Gen Zers who think Star Trek is dumb and boring.

Glad it’s finally coming. (although I think I’ve had pretty much the entire first season spoiled because … internet).
Still, I’m looking forward to watching it.

What still hasn’t been announced, if ever, to be released internationally is the 2nd batch of Short Treks.

Fantastic news! I am really looking forward to Lower Decks! Well done amazon! :-)