After two acclaimed and successful seasons at the video-sharing platform, the Karate Kid sequel series Cobra Kai is looking for a new streaming home ahead of its third season premiere as YouTube is looking to move away from scripted programming.
YouTube has co-produced the series with Sony Pictures TV for the three seasons but sources report that as the service looks to move more into unscripted programming, they informed the studio they would not be commissioning a fourth season of the series. Given its record-breaking viewership of over 80 million viewers across the first and second season premieres, Sony didn’t want to the series to end and has been negotiating with YouTube for the rights to take it to a new streaming platform for its upcoming third season and any future seasons, as well as non-exclusive rights to stream past seasons.
Sources report that Netflix and Hulu are currently the top contenders for the rights to the project and that YouTube will not formally release the rights to the series or debut the new season until a new home has been secured.
In Cobra Kai, Ralph Macchio and William Zabka revisit their star-making roles from the iconic film franchise, The Karate Kid. The epic adversaries return to the dojo, thirty years after the events of the 1984 All Valley Karate Tournament. A down-and-out Johnny Lawrence (Zabka) seeks redemption by reopening the infamous Cobra Kai karate dojo, reigniting his rivalry with a now-successful Daniel LaRusso (Macchio), who has been struggling to maintain balance in his life without the guidance of his mentor, Mr. Miyagi.
YouTube officially renewed its critically-acclaimed martial arts drama series for a third season which is scheduled to premiere in 2020. The upcoming season will see Daniel LaRusso returning to Japan in order to continue to navigate through life without the mentorship of his Karate Kid sensei, Mr. Miyagi. LaRusso fought in Japan during the events of 1986’s The Karate Kid Part II.
The first season of Cobra Kai proved to be a strong success for the video service, with the first episode garnering over 50 million views within five months of airing and critics and audiences praising the series, awarding it the rare 100 percent “Certified Fresh” rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The second season also opened with a record-breaking premiere and received highly strong reviews from critics, currently sitting at an 88 percent approval rating from critics on Rotten Tomatoes.