Roku, which assembled a nice collection of users by being a more open-ended alternative to Apple, Amazon, and Google in the “things that you let you stream stuff” market, got into the business of producing its own original content earlier this year by picking up the scattered, sun-bleached remains of Quibi and rebranding its content as Roku Originals. The move was a resounding success, revealing that it was never the actual content that held Quibi back (not that anyone ever thought that), and it evidently also gave Roku a taste for resurrecting projects that had been cast off by their original owner. The latest move isn’t quite as dramatic as reviving Quibi, but it’s similarly surprising: According to Deadline, Roku has ordered a follow-up to canceled NBC musical comedy Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, but rather than a full third season, it will be an all-new holiday movie sequel.
This is surprising on pretty much every level, but one key factor in that surprise is that Peacock (which is owned by the same parent company as NBC) declined to pick up a Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist continuation already. With no movement, then, the contracts for the main cast were allowed to expire, which is almost always the final nail in the coffin for canceled TV shows hoping to get rescued—because, at that point, any potential rescuers would have to negotiate new contracts, which might mean paying the actors more money.
And yet here comes Roku, which Deadline says is “in the process of finalizing” new deals for the “key actors” with Zoey’s studio Lionsgate Television. Deadline also points out that Roku is having a hell of a year, with profits up ahead of forecasts and the number of active accounts going up by over a million since the first quarter of the year (at a total of 55.1 million), so if there was ever a time to pick a holiday movie sequel to Zoey’s Extraordinary Playlist, it’s now.