Microsoft may cut back on its original Xbox television series plans [Update]

A new report from Variety claims that Microsoft's Xbox division could cut back on its plans to fund and produce a series of original TV shows and specials. The changes could be made as part of the company's restructuring plans that will cause 18,000 employees to lose their jobs.

The report, which uses unnamed sources, claims Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella is now questioning the company's plans for the Xbox division to product original shows for the Xbox One and Xbox 360 game consoles, along with other Microsoft-based devices. Microsoft launched Xbox Studios in Santa Monica, California in 2012 and hired former CBS network executive Nancy Tellem to lead the division.

In April, Microsoft announced a slate of shows, under the umbrella brand Xbox Originals that were either in active development or in the planning stages. Variety's report suggests that the Halo TV series, with Steven Spielberg serving as one of its executive producers, is still scheduled to be produced under an partnership with Showtime. However, the list of the other shows under the Xbox Originals banner are expected to be "significantly trimmed" thanks to Nadella's proposed changes.

Microsoft also has a separate Halo digital live action series that's already in production and will be released this fall as part of the Xbox One Halo Master Chief Collection. What do you think of Microsoft possibly cutting back on its Xbox Originals plans?

Update: Another report, this time from Re/code and once again based on unnamed sources, claims that Microsoft will slowly shut down Xbox Entertainment Studios, although projects that are still in production such as the Halo TV series will continue to be developed. The article did not state just how long it will take to fully close the studio, which has 200 team members.

Source: Variety

John Callaham