We have a bit of a good news, bad news situation for lovers of coming-of-age drama. The good news is that Dawson's Creek is set to arrive on Netflix next month. The bad news is that the classic show will be making its debut on the streaming service without its classic theme song, Paul Cole's I Don't Want to Wait.
Taking to its social media accounts, Netflix announced that all six seasons of Dawson's Creek will be available on the streaming service in the U.S. starting November 1. But, the company also made it clear that the classic theme song that fans of the show closely associate with it will not be part of the equation. Netflix stated the following.
"Dawson's Creek, one of television's most beloved coming-of-age stories, is coming to Netflix in The US on November 1 ...and before you ask, the episodes won't have the original theme song (sorry)
I Don't Want to Wait was used for all six seasons of the show while it was airing. However, due to rights issues, it was replaced for home video and streaming releases. Instead, Jann Arden's Run Like Mad will lay with the show on Netflix. The song was actually recorded as the original theme and was even used in areas where Sony didn't have the rights to Paula Cole's song. Cole, for her part, addressed the issue in a 2012 essay published by the Huffington Post.
"Everyone keeps asking me, 'Why won't you let them have the song?' Of course I would consider it! I'm right here! Come talk to me, Sony. Let's negotiate! I'm an independent artist open for business! But I won't give my music for free and I don't think any artist should give their music for free unless it's helping out another independent artist, and then you renegotiate once the project is successful. I think giving one's art for free to giant corporations hurts artists and musicians and society across the board."
The series made stars of James Van Der Beek, Katie Holmes, Joshua Jackson and Michelle Williams. It followed the lives of Dawson, Joey, Pacey and Jen as they transitioned from adolescents to young adults in the small coastal town of Capeside, Massachusetts. It was created by Kevin Williamson, of Scream and I Know What You Did Last Summer frame, and was based on his personal experiences. Dawson's Creek dealt with controversial topics and became the standard for teen dramas on television for years even after it went off the air.
Dawson's Creek debuted in 1998 and aired until 2003. Across six seasons, a total of 128 episodes were produced. Because Sony owns the rights to Run Like Mad, they don't have to pay any additional fees to use it. On the contrary, if they wanted to restore I Don't Want to Wait, they would have to cut a deal with Paula Cole, which would likely be costly. You can check out the announcement from the Netflix Twitter account.