Starz has a date and teasers available in today’s announcement for Black Sails. The Michael Bay-produced pirate drama has been parked in January 2014, a full eight months away. While we are not quite sold that it will be the best thing since fried rice, there is hope that it could at least be one of the premium network’s top programs–not that that would be be saying much. Read on for the press release.
Beverly Hills, Calif – May 7, 2013– STARZ today revealed the official key art and two teaser videos for the highly anticipated Michael Bay executive produced high-seas drama “Black Sails,” which will premiere in January 2014. Continue Reading
It seems David S. Goyer’s Da Vinci’s Demons made quite the impression on viewers and Starz execs as the premium network just revealed plans for a second season of the historical fantasy drama. This word follows the show’s debut last Friday which has found over 2 million viewers since that time, marking the networks ‘highest-rated premiere weekend ever.’ The series is led by Tom Riley, Laura Haddock, and Ian Pirie. Its freshman run spans eight episodes. Continue Reading
Starz has a new series coming down the pipe from producer Michael Bay. Hopefully for them, this is the ticket they need to finally get their premium network flowing with A-grade scripted entertainment. The channel has been trying for years, but nothing has seemed to stick and their most-watched efforts to date, Spartacus, did not go beyond a third year. Black Sails could be an interesting one to watch yet there is likely unease about it because its contrast to Pirates of theCaribbean, the only thing people have to compare it too.Its action above dialogue approach early on is also a concern. All of this screened footage appears to be from the show’s pilot episode, but I am already feeling a Vikings vibe here which is another ‘okay’ period drama over at History. Continue Reading
The new Starz series Da Vinci’s Demons has a brand new trailer today. This is a project from frequent Christopher Nolan collaborator David S. Goyer which is why it is receiving more than its fair share of attention. Its plot centers around Leonardo Da Vinci as he navigates the limits of expression surrounding the time period. The series takes on themes that include faith and authority. Continue Reading
Some of you have been curious if Magic City will end up back on Starz this year after their big marketing push failed to make waves for the Miami-set period drama. Well, it is indeed making a return as a renewal came down a very long time ago, and now we have a first look at the marketing campaign for the show’s second season premiering this summer. The premium network is still hot on the series particularly after they cancelled one of their flagship series’ Boss, so we would be shocked to see this one go out the door anytime soon. Original programming does not exactly grow on trees. Continue Reading
Julianne Hough must be drinking some of that producer Kool-Aid that her boyfriend Ryan Seacrest seems tethered to as the Safe Haven star just teamed with Starz (and her brother) to create a new show. The series being developed is a competitive dancing drama called Blackpool set in the competitive world of international ballroom dancing. Both Houghs are said to be serving as choreographers on the program.
This is a bit of a departure for the premium network who has struck out swinging with its scripted offerings in the past. Perhaps skewing a longform effort towards the female demographic could help bolster subscribers to what many consider the weakest of the ‘pay extra’ channels. That definitely makes a lot of sense seeing how important cross-demo appeal has been to rival HBO’s success in the past. Continue Reading
After two critically-acknowledged, but seldom watched seasons, Starz has finally pulled the plug on Boss. This is the third series starring Kelsey Grammer to receive the ax since Frasier, and even though the actor did receive nods for his performance as Mayor Tom Kane, we strongly suspect he might take a breaking after this one.
Starz has released the following statement on the matter:
“After much deliberation, we have made the difficult decision to not proceed with [a third season of] Boss. We remain proud of this award-winning show, its exceptional cast and writers, and are grateful to Kelsey Grammer, [creator]Farhad Safinia and our partners at Lionsgate TV.”
The upcoming period pirate drama from executive producer Michael Bay has found its pilot director. Neil Marshall has been tapped to direct the Treasure Island-spun series’ first episode and that is great news to say the least. While the man has worked mostly on the feature side of things with movies like The Descent and Centurion, this is also the guy who directed the penultimate episode of Game of Thrones season two entitled Blackwater. Just to clarify, it is about the coolest episode in the series to date as it manages to showcase a Lord of the Rings scale battle on the cheap with a high level of watchability. Continue Reading
Starz has been really hell bent on improving their original programming slate in recent years, but no series thus far carry the same wait as one from Transformers director Michael Bay. The network just picked up a show from the producer called Black Sails. Read on for the official Starz press release which contains a few details about the pirate adventure series. Continue Reading
There is news today that Starz has renewed its distribution deal with DirecTV which is not exactly noteworthy information in itself; however, the details surrounding it exists as a prime example of cable content’s continued migration online for distribution through a variety of internet-based platforms. Starz will now allow DirecTV’s customers access to its Starz Online and Encore Online services–both of which are similar to HBO GO in that they each will provide a deep library of the networks’ past and present content beyond that of an on-demand channel. This of course will be accessible through smart television interfaces and mobile devices. Mobile is the ‘sexy’ term in the industry right now as it is a growing sector of entertainment consumption in both the film and movies industries, and even though big studios would prefer that everyone ‘stick to the living room’ things are progressing very quickly in the world of internet distribution rights.
It was not always this way. Just last year there were legal dust-ups when Time Warner and other cable companies started to jump the gun on such offerings without the consent of their business partners, but it now appears as if providers and media conglomerates have discovered that it is in their own best interests to get this thing going. Capitalistic competition is certainly in the driver’s seat as many young and low-income subscribers have been seeing Netflix as an alternative rather than a supplement to cable. Cord cutting remains a fear, and offering more content more easily on more devices is seen as the best way to combat this problem.
Read on for the full press release.
El Segundo, Calif. and Englewood, Colo. – April 16, 2012– Starz Entertainment, LLC, and DIRECTV, announced today that the companies have entered into a multi-platform distribution agreement extension. The new deal provides for DIRECTV to continue to offer the Starz Entertainment premium channels, HD, and on-demand services, and grants DIRECTV the rights to offer STARZ ONLINE and ENCORE ONLINE services on its DIRECTV Everywhere service, which is currently in beta, for its authenticated STARZSuper Pack subscribers. In addition, the agreement enables DIRECTV to launch MOVIEPLEX, INDIEPLEX, and RETROPLEX, and the related MOVIEPLEX ON DEMAND and MOVIEPLEX ONLINE service on DIRECTV Everywhere.
DIRECTV offers 15 STARZ and ENCORE channels, with eight in high definition for its STARZ Super Pack subscribers, in addition to the STARZ ON DEMAND and ENCORE ON DEMAND services. DIRECTV’s STARZ ON DEMAND and ENCORE ON DEMAND services – and STARZ ONLINE and ENCORE ONLINE on DIRECTV Everywhere – offer about 600 top movies, originals, and TV programming per month. The MOVIEPLEX on-demand and online services will add about an additional 200 titles once launched.
Financial terms and other deal specifics were not disclosed.
“We are pleased that the STARZ and ENCORE premium channels and service are a part of our DIRECTV Everywhere platform” said Derek Chang, executive vice president, Content Strategy and Development, DIRECTV. “Providing our STARZ Super Pack subscribers with online access to their subscription content from Starz through DIRECTV Everywhere later this year will bring even more value to our customers.”
“DIRECTV and Starz have a long, symbiotic relationship going back to the early 1990s, and I am very pleased that we are able to extend and expand our existing business relationship,” said Ed Huguez, president of affiliate distribution for Starz Entertainment. “With great movies, ‘Spartacus,’ and ‘Magic City,’ the value proposition for subscribing to our multi-platform premium programming has never been better.”
Talk about confident. The premium network Starz is set to debut Magic City next Friday, and rather than going the traditional route of putting just the season premiere online, they one-upped their competition by putting the first three episodes on the web free of charge.
This type of network only cares about subscribers and not necessarily live ratings, so this unique marketing scheme’s overall impact on early week-to-week viewership will hardly matter. Both HBO and Showtime have already figured that their bases are pretty much watching programs after they air via on-demand or replays. Showtime actually went as far as to have Jeremy Irons plug The Borgias on-demand presence in one of their spots recently for the series’ upcoming season.
On the heels of a successful entry into quality original programming with last fall’s debut of the critically acclaimed drama Boss, the network hopes that Magic City will be the series that could change the network’s perception among viewers as a third tier ‘extras’ cable network. With comparisons to Mad Men and other well established serialized offerings being floated about, one might be a tad disappointed as the period drama fails to rise up the ranks to a critically acclaimed masterpiece; however, it is still a welcomed improvement from Starz.
Golden Globe-winner Kelsey Grammer is set to reprise his role as Mayor Tom Kane in the upcoming second season of the Starz series Boss. It’s still a ways off, but there is good news today for fans of the drama in the form of a teaser for the sophomore run which kicks off in August.