Netflix and Nickelodeon just inked a major deal promising a slate of new projects, including a SpongeBob SquarePants spinoff. SpongeBob SquarePants first aired on Nickelodeon in 1999, and twenty years later it's become an enduring pop culture phenomenon. The show has consistently been popular on TV, but it's also been spun off into other areas of entertainment like movies, comics, video games, and even a musical stage show. There have been two theatrical movies released, with a third, The SpongeBob Movie: Sponge on the Run, coming out in 2020.
Rumors of a SpongeBob SquarePants spinoff based on Squidward Tentacles have been circulating for a while. Squidward is SpongeBob's ill-tempered neighbor in Bikini Bottom, and he has been a main character in the show since the pilot. A lot of his plotlines revolve around SpongeBob, Patrick Star, and other sea creatures bothering disturbing his peaceful existence. As one of the most well-known characters on the long-running Nickelodeon show, Squidward would be an obvious choice for a potential spin-off TV show or movie of his own.
The Verge reports Netflix and Nickelodeon have signed a multi-year deal, estimated at $200 million. As part of the deal, Netflix will produce original TV shows and movies based one existing Nickelodeon properties, including SpongeBob Squarepants. The unconfirmed Squidward spinoff would be a “music-based project” about the cantankerous octopus. Recently, Netflix acquired the streaming rights to several other popular Nickelodeon properties, which resulted in movies like Rocko's Modern Life: Static Cling and Invader Zim: Enter the Florpus airing on the streaming platform. As part of the new deal, Netflix will produce content based on both new and existing Nickelodeon franchises. However, the deal does not mean that Netflix has secured the streaming rights to all 20-years of SpongeBob's episodes.
Previously, Nickelodeon announced that they are moving forward with a SpongeBob SquarePants prequel series, focusing on a 10-year-old SpongeBob at summer camp. The working title for the series is Kamp Koral. The series started production in June, with Marc Ceccarelli and Vincent Waller co-executive producing. Nickelodeon, which is owned by Viacom, doesn't work with a single streaming platform. In fact, some of its shows can be found on almost every streaming site.
With the rise of so many streaming services like Disney+ and HBO Max, it makes sense that Netflix is eager to make new deals with existing properties. The deal with Nickelodeon is a major win for Netflix. While Netflix has a huge array of entertainment offerings on its site, from rom-coms to horror shows, children and families are an important demographic in the streaming market. Nickelodeon is a powerhouse in the children's' entertainment industry, and the deal might bring in new customers for Netflix. This includes people who want to see more of Rugrats, Danny Phantom, or other Nickelodeon fan-favorites from the past.
With Netflix having purchased the Rocko's Modern Life and Invader Zim movies even before this deal, it's possible that more old animated series, reboots, and spinoffs will appear on the streaming site in the future. Either way, a SpongeBob SquarePants spinoff would be a great start for Netflix and Nickelodeon's partnership.
Source: The Verge