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Billions Set To Become A Universe For Showtime With A Possible Four Spin-Offs (With The Worst Titles)

Showtime's high-finance drama "Billions" is about to undergo some serious inflation, with the hit series slated to be extended into no less than four potential spin-offs (per The Wall Street Journal). Already Showtime's most enduring scripted original show, "Billions" debuted in 2016 (via IMDb) and is currently en route into its sixth season.

Co-created by executive producers Brian Koppelman and David Levien, the series pits Damian Lewis' mega-rich hedge fund power broker Bobby "Axe" Axelrod against Paul Giamatti's Chuck Rhoades, who starts out as a U.S. Attorney for New York's Southern District but eventually ascends to become Attorney General of New York. Clawing his way up to the top of New York's financial food chain through his predatory instincts and ruthless intelligence, Axelrod is also not averse to a little white-collar crime when he thinks he can get away with it. And this, of course, lands him squarely in the sights of prosecutorial pit bull Rhoades. As the series progresses, however, the two natural enemies can also become allies when it turns out they have more to gain by joining forces against a common foe. And, as one of Showtime's crown programming jewels, it's no surprise that this popular series is ripe for building out into a whole universe of its own — even if the dubious titles of the spin-offs could use a little more workshopping.

The expanded Billions slate is part of franchise-building plans at Paramount+ on Showtime

As recently announced, Showtime and Paramount are merging operations to become the newly designated Paramount+ on Showtime. With the two entertainment enterprises teaming up, it seems Paramount Global exec Chris McCarthy is likely hoping to transform "Billions" into a multi-series franchise the same way he helped shepherd Paramount's neo-Western smash "Yellowstone" into its "1883," "1923" and pending "6666" iterations (per The Hollywood Reporter).

With its basic narrative foundation of obscenely wealthy and powerful financial titans playing a high-stakes game of cat-and-mouse with the legal and regulatory entities charged with the never-ending task of keeping them honest, "Billions" seems tailor-made for franchising. The basic premise of the show certainly lends itself to endless permutations of capitalism gone wild and the consequences thereof. So, with this promising legacy to build on, it's perhaps a little disappointing that the spin-off titles mentioned thus far are, yes, "Millions" and "Trillions," as detailed in the same The Hollywood Reporter article noted above. Still, the prospect of more big-money capers makes the prospect of a wider "Billions" universe something to look forward to.