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WarnerMedia names streamer HBO Max

WarnerMedia’s classic sitcom Friends will be removed from Netflix next year

AT&T-owned WarnerMedia has named its forthcoming US direct-to-consumer service HBO Max, which will feature its own exclusive original programming and major brands, including Friends.

HBO Max brings HBO content together with programming from Warner Bros, New Line, DC Entertainment, CNN, TNT, TBS, truTV, The CW, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Rooster Teeth and Looney Tunes.

It will also feature new programming from The CW network, including Batwoman and Katy Keene, plus original movies from Greg Berlanti and Reese Witherspoon and hits from Warner Bros Television’s library, such as The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and Pretty Little Liars.

Other exclusive programming includes all 236 episodes of Friends, which will disappear from Netflix in the US from the beginning of 2020.

HBO Max is scheduled to launch commercially in spring of 2020 and is anticipated to premiere with 10,000 hours of premium content, the company said.

“HBO Max will bring together the diverse riches of WarnerMedia to create programming and user experiences not seen before in a streaming platform. HBO’s world-class programming leads the way, the quality of which will be the guiding principle for our new array of Max Originals, our exciting acquisitions, and the very best of the Warner Bros libraries, starting with the phenomenon that is Friends,” said Robert Greenblatt, chairman, WarnerMedia Entertainment and direct-to-consumer.

HBO Max will offer The CW’s latest live-action superhero, Batwoman

“Under the leadership of two of the strongest creative visionaries – Casey Bloys (HBO) and Kevin Reilly (original content and acquisitions) – and two of the most experienced digital experts – Tony Goncalves and Andy Forssell – I have no doubt they and their dedicated teams will deliver the world’s best storytelling to audiences of all ages wherever and whenever they want it.”

Previously announced Max Original series include Dune: The Sisterhood, Tokyo Vice, The Flight Attendant, Love Life, Station Eleven, Made for Love and Gremlins.

HBO programming previously announced for 2020 and 2021 includes Stephen King’s The Outsider, Lovecraft Country, The Nevers, The Gilded Age, Avenue 5, The Undoing, The Plot Against America, Perry Mason and I Know This Much Is True.

Casey Bloys, programming president of HBO, continues to oversee content on the HBO service, with investment in originals having been increased 50% over normal spending.

Kevin Reilly, president of Warner Media Entertainment Networks, which includes TNT, TBS and truTV, also serves as chief content officer of HBO Max, overseeing all new Max Originals and library content.

Tony Goncalves, CEO of Otter Media, now oversees the development of HBO Max with Andy Forssell, also from Otter Media and formerly CEO of Hulu, as general manager.

Hollywood creators and producers who are either producing for HBO and/or an upcoming HBO Max Original include Anna Kendrick, Issa Rae, Greg Berlanti, Damon Lindelof, Lena Dunham, Nicole Kidman, Kaley Cuoco and George RR Martin.



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