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Showtime Bets on Billions (and Millions and Trillions)

Billions. Photo: Showtime

Showtime has finished slaughtering your favorite show, and now it’s back to the boardroom birthing the Billions cinematic universe. The network plans to produce as many as four series connected to the high-stakes hedge-fund drama. And it’s a bet that could create a lucrative franchise out of one of its most popular hits, per The Wall Street Journal — namely, Millions and Trillions, two spinoffs with astonishingly creative working titles. Co-creators Brian Koppelman and David Levien are currently developing another untitled iteration that’s set in the Miami cryptocurrency milieu. (Have the bigwigs considered the title Gazillions by any chance? A made-up word for a *made-up* speculative currency.) The duo is involved in a potential spinoff set in London. As for the titled offerings: Millions is like Industry in that it focuses on the lives of young people in finance, while Trillions is a reportedly soapier show about a group of ultrarich people.

Overall, Showtime hopes organizing the network around a couple of blockbuster series — like business daddy Paramount Global’s Yellowstone franchise — is a surefire way of keeping the cash flowing. Case in point: A Dexter expansion is coming soon with a prequel ordered and separate shows about standout characters considered. Speaking of existing IP, Showtime greenlit a George Clooney–directed espionage thriller, The Department. Based on the French series Le Bureau des Légendes, the show will “follow in the great tradition of Homeland,” Chris McCarthy, president and CEO of Showtime and Paramount Media, told Variety. (Homeland itself wasn’t available for the franchise treatment, because it was produced by a Disney-owned studio.) The only thing that could stop the cinematic universe and remake trend is if Showtime loses this bet.

Showtime Bets On Billions (and Millions and Trillions)