Cablevision And HBO Announce Agreement To Provide HBO Now Via Internet And Optimum Wifi


(HBO) Cablevision and Home Box Office (HBO) announced today that they have reached an agreement to offer standalone streaming service HBO NOW to Optimum Online customers via the internet. Optimum is the first cable provider to partner with HBO to offer the new service, which is expected to launch in April in time for the fifth season of Game of Thrones.

Kristin Dolan, Cablevision chief operating officer said: “As New York’s premier connectivity company, we are enabling Optimum Online customers to enjoy content in any way they choose to receive it. We are well-positioned to support HBO NOW and, as technology advances, Cablevision will continue to meet the evolving needs of our customers.”

“We couldn’t be more excited that our longtime partner has joined us for the launch of HBO NOW,” said Tom Woodbury, President, Global Distribution, HBO. “We believe that HBO NOW will have great appeal to Cablevision’s broadband customers.”

HBO NOW provides instant access to HBO’s acclaimed programming, allowing viewers to watch every episode of every season of the best series programming, more of the biggest and latest Hollywood hit movies, original HBO Films, groundbreaking documentaries, sports, and comedy and music specials. With the upcoming launch of HBO NOW, Optimum will now offer the full suite of HBO products, which also includes its pay TV channels and TV to GO offering, giving customers more options than ever before.

Cablevision plans to provide pricing and other particulars for HBO NOW in the coming weeks. Terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

Optimum Online offers an unparalleled internet experience, including a wide-range of high-speed internet product tiers that are designed to provide the right speeds for every type of user as well as access to Optimum WiFi, the nation’s most robust WiFi network featuring 1.1 million hotspots across the tri-state area. For more information on Optimum Online, visit

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HBO To Launch Standalone Premium Streaming Service This April


(HBO) Home Box Office announced today the name of its standalone premium streaming service – HBO NOW – and that the service will launch this April, bringing the highly anticipated new product to audiences in time for the fifth season of Game of Thrones. HBO and Apple also announced that for the first time an HBO subscription will be made available directly to Apple customers through HBO NOW.

HBO NOW provides instant access to HBO’s acclaimed programming. Watch every episode of every season of the best series programming, more of the biggest and latest Hollywood hit movies, original HBO Films, groundbreaking documentaries, sports and comedy and music specials. To subscribe to the streaming service HBO NOW, consumers only need the internet.

Apple will give viewers the ability to enjoy HBO programming via HBO NOW. Upon launch, customers can subscribe using the HBO NOW app on their iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, or directly on Apple TV for instant access. Users can purchase HBO NOW directly in-app for $14.99 a month. Upon registering, subscribers will also be able to watch at HBO will offer a 30 day introductory free trial period to new HBO NOW customers who sign up through Apple in April.

HBO continues to be in discussions with its existing network of distributors and new digital partners to offer HBO NOW. At launch, HBO NOW will be available on iOS devices and on PCs.

“HBO NOW is the next phase of innovation at HBO,” said Richard Plepler, chairman and CEO, HBO. “With this new partnership, a natural evolution for the network, we have access to millions of Apple customers who are used to getting their favorite apps immediately. Now, they can do the same with an HBO subscription.”

“HBO NOW offers a new generation of HBO fans many of the best TV programs in the world without a cable or satellite subscription,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “Now, with the same simplicity as buying an app, customers can subscribe to HBO NOW and instantly start viewing their favorite HBO programs as they air – this is huge.”

Similar to HBO GO, HBO NOW will offer more than 2,000 titles online. This includes current critically acclaimed series like Game of Thrones®, True Detective®, Silicon Valley®, Girls®, Veep® and The Leftovers®, as well as classics like The Sopranos®, Sex and the City®, True Blood®, The Wire® and Deadwood®.

Highly-anticipated upcoming original programs like Westworld, the drama series starring Anthony Hopkins, Ed Harris and Evan Rachel Wood; The Brink, the dark comedy series starring Jack Black and Tim Robbins; the new season of the Emmy®-winning True Detective with Vince Vaughn, Colin Farrell and Rachel McAdams; and HBO Films’ Bessie, starring Queen Latifah, will become available on HBO NOW as they air on HBO.

In addition, HBO NOW will showcase Last Week Tonight with John Oliver, named “best of 2014” on many critics’ lists; VICE, the Emmy®-winning, cutting-edge news magazine series hosted by Shane Smith; HBO Sports documentaries, series and World Championship Boxing events; and groundbreaking documentary programming like Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, The Jinx: The Life and Deaths of Robert Durst and the Oscar®-winning Citizenfour.

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HBO Announces Second Installment Of The Game Of Thrones Mixtape


(HBO) HBO has teamed up with some of the music industry’s top artists for the second installment of Catch the Throne: The Mixtape, for the Emmy®- and Golden Globe-winning series Game of Thrones. Building on the success of Volume 1 – with over 2.5MM streams to date – that attracted hip-hop and reggaeton fans alike, Volume 2 will feature Method Man, Snoop Dogg and Yandel and will transcend genres by adding Grammy-nominated metal bands Anthrax and Killswitch Engage to the mixtape lineup. The mixtape will be released in anticipation of the season 5 debut of Game of Thrones airing April 12th on HBO.

Produced by Launch Point Records, the 15-song mixtape features diverse artists representing Game of Thrones families, leveraging themes and highlights from season 4. Showcasing the importance of music in Game of Thrones, each song on the mixtape samples music from the show’s season 4 soundtrack. This year’s mixtape also weaves in the overarching theme of fire and ice, providing listeners with an exciting line-up of heavy metal and hip-hop artists.

As huge fans of the series, artists were eager to participate. “Off the top, I love Game of Thrones – I even gave my expert analysis of this season on my GGN show. It’s like the rap game, it’s gangster, about family, loyalty and trying to get to the top,” stated Snoop Dogg. “I had to get involved. Give the fans a little bit of how I see it.”

Lucinda Martinez, SVP of Multicultural Marketing at HBO stated, “Catch the Throne: The Mixtape garnered much praise and piqued interest of artists wanting to partake in its sequel. We’re excited to seize the opportunity to channel the fandom of these artists into volume 2 and give audiences another opportunity to experience original music inspired by the show. We are particularly excited to integrate heavy metal into the mixtape this time around to continue our celebration of this groundbreaking series.” Scott Ian, founding member of Anthrax, stated, “As fans of Game of Thrones, we are extremely excited to collaborate on this project. Recording a song about the Lannister family allows us to connect more with our fans and Game of Thrones fans in a way we would have never imagined.”

Catch the Throne: The Mixtape Vol. 2 will be released next month, free of charge. Listeners are encouraged to share using the hashtag #CatchTheThrone.

Viewers can access previous seasons of Game of Thrones on HBO GO, HBO On Demand or by checking local listings for replays. For more on the series, visit: and @GameOfThrones.

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Has Lena Dunham’s Hopeless Trashy Hipster Run Out of Steam in HBO Girls Season 4?

lena-dunham-adam-driver-set-girls-hbo(PCM) HBO is known for long running series that go out on top, think Sopranos and Sex And The City. The list can go on and on.

Then there is Girls. A show that insults many women’s issues by celebrating them falsely rather than treating them with honest respect. This wouldn’t be a problem if the show wasn’t attempting to pawn off the character portrayals as being honest representations. Among other concerns this may be the largest reason the show continues to lose viewers.

Over time viewers have figured the show out and have grown weary of Lena Dunham’s pretentious ownership of depression and other internal women’s struggles.

You may agree this be why season four (opener down 39 percent) of Girls is off to such a sad start.

What began as a great look into the twenty something culture in New York City still offers the non New Yorker a feel for what it means to be a hipster in Brooklyn or any lost soul navigating the workplace in Manhattan. Yet the show on a whole has become less and less real each season it airs. It’s hard to argue against this logic as the numbers back it. In the 18 to 40 demo, viewership is down 35 percent.

Girls has been picked up for a season 5., It may be the last in which the show doesn’t go out on top. Of course, Lena Dunham could use her character’s many depression related illnesses to do the character in. That would be sharp turn from the Sopranos series end. It would also be the most clarity Girls would have in years.


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New Television Shows You Should Be Watching (But Probably Aren’t)

(PCM) We always get incredibly excited during the start of the new year, as this is the time when many of the networks begin rolling out their previews for everything we can expect to grace of TV screens for the coming year.

From the looks of things, 2015 is well on its’ way to becoming another great year for television and there are several new shows that have certainly grabbed our attention.

1. FOX’s Empire 


Wednesdays at 9/8c
After watching an early screener of the premiere we were hooked and this series appears to be gaining steam with each and every following episode.

From Academy Award nominee Lee Daniels, Emmy Award winner Danny Strong, and Brian Grazer, Empire is a drama about a family dynasty, set within a world of music, glamour, danger and power. Featuring music by prolific producer Timbaland, the series stars Terrance Howard and Taraji P. Henson

2. Syfy’s 12 Monkeys 


Fridays at 9/8c

Based upon the highly acclaimed 1995 Bruce Willis film by the same name, 12 Monkeys is an apocalyptic tale about a deadly virus that has been unleashed by a group known as the Army of the 12 Monkeys.

The new series is a gripping and edge of your seat thriller as we follow the journey of James Cole, brilliantly portrayed by actor Aaron Stanford on his quest to both save the world and find himself some sort of redemption for things he has done in his past.

3. ABC’s Marvel’s: Agent Carter


Tuesdays at 8/7c

Despite lackluster ratings, Marvel’s Agent Carter is definitely a show that we find ourselves compelled to tune in and view. The series is set in a very film-noir styled 1946 and explains the origins that we have come to known as S.H.I.E.L.D.

What we love about the series is the way that it is trying in both the Marvel TV and film franchises, as Peggy Carter aka. Agent Carter was once the love interest of Steve Rogers aka. Captain America. Carter believes that Rogers perished in a plane crash and while she was only featured briefly in the Captain America film, the new seven episode series truly gives her a rightful time to shine.

4. FOX’s Backstrom 


Thursdays at 9/8c

Always one of our favorites during his time on “The Office”, actor Rainn Wilson stars as Backstrom, as special-crimes detective who has a special knack for solving mysterious murders.

In the series Backstrom hilariously just about hates everything, which brings a certain level of humor to the tense crime scene situations. We are hoping that Backstrom will get picked up for a second season, as we are sure that over time more details of his backstory and just how he became the way he is will surely be revealed.

5. HBO’s Togetherness


Sundays at 9:30/8:30c

The new HBO comedy from brothers Jay and Mark Duplass is both smart and wickedly funny. The series focuses on the life of a long-time couple with two children who have their world tuned upside down when her sister and his best friend are forced to move in with them as well.

The series shows that the grass is not always greener on the other side of scenario and everyone is hilariously pushed to their limits in a variety of creative ways.

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Jay And Mark Duplass Discuss Their New HBO TV Series “Togetherness”


(HBO) Brett and Michelle are struggling to rekindle the spark in their relationship, which has puttered out from the stresses of marriage and children. When Brett’s friend Alex and Michelle’s sister, Tina, move in with them, the foursome engage in a tragically comedic struggle to follow their personal dreams, while still remaining good friends, siblings and spouses to each other.

Created by Jay Duplass & Mark Duplass & Steve Zissis, “Togetherness” is the TV debut as a writing team from brothers Jay Duplass and Mark Duplass. The new comedy series begins its eight-episode season Sunday, Jan. 11 (9:30-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO. Blending laughter and pathos, the show follows four adults nearing 40, living under the same roof and struggling to keep their relationships and their dreams alive.

Q: Together you have written, directed and produced more than 20 movies. How is working on a series different from working on a film?

MARK DUPLASS: The main difference is being able to track the very intricate, subtle interactions between the characters. When you’re dealing with the 90-minute format of a movie, you’ve set the whole thing up, then you’ve got a good chunk in the middle where you can dig into things, and then you’ve got to wrap it up. With TV, you put the ball in the air and you have tons of time to mine all of those awkward, funny, sad interpersonal relationship dynamics that really get us excited about storytelling.

Q: Why did you bring TOGETHERNESS to HBO?

MD: The thing that makes HBO really exciting is that they bet on their filmmakers. They help you when you need it, but they don’t necessarily try to develop you too much or push you too much in one direction. It was really exciting to be able to make a show and be fully supported, but also to do exactly we wanted to do.

Q: With Mark in one of the lead roles, it begs the question: Does any of the show come from personal experience? What other influences went into creating the show?

JAY DUPLASS: Mark and I spent a ton of time in our 20s trying to be very referential, trying to be the Coen brothers and failing miserably at that. Then we lucked into this experience where we started making fun of ourselves on screen. The first movie we ever made that was really any good was a seven-minute short film about a guy trying to perfect the personal greeting of his answering machine and failing to do so, and having a nervous breakdown, which actually happened to one of us in real life.

This show is an extension of our caveman style of filmmaking. Mark and I did not grow up in Hollywood. We didn’t know anyone in the industry, and we didn’t have any awareness of people who made movies until we went to college in Austin and saw what Richard Linklater was doing. We’ve always made things by hand and represented our own world, and I think TOGETHERNESS is probably the truest and most accurate thing that we’ve ever done.

The show is about being in your late 30s, living on the East Side of LA, having kids and trying to be a family person, and trying to also make your own dreams come true. That’s really just the stuff of our lives and the conflict of our lives. In terms of drawing inspiration, we just talk about our own lives and the lives of our best friends and our family, and all the material comes from there.

Q: How do you work together?

MD: Every project is a little different in terms of how we approach it, but this is the most intensely collaborative project we’ve done, because it’s bigger in scope. We’re functioning in a lot of roles and we’re preparing a bit more on this show than we normally do. There are just natural lines that get divided, where Jay and I talk about who is going to take the lead at this one given moment. We’ve never had an issue with crazy ego stuff about letting one person take the lead, which is important because you can’t have two people sitting in the driver’s seat at all times trying to push the pedal and fight with each other. It’s a great comfort to know that if I’m feeling grumpy and uninspired, Jay will push a little bit harder and get things done.

JD: One thing that’s nice is when stuff goes down, Mark and I can discuss it between the two of us, and be super honest.

Q: How did you find your collaborative voice for TOGETHERNESS?

MD: Jay and I discovered our voice through the conversations we’ve had our whole lives, where we’re up an hour or two late and a little bit tired, and either crying or laughing about something that’s going on in our lives. If we feel like we have one major strength, it is to look at the pain and the struggles of intimacy and friendships and your dreams, and take one step back and realize how stupid and funny you look in the middle of all of it.

Q: What is it about minor victories in life that inspire people to keep going?

JD: We’ve realized that the big victories never tend to be exactly what you think they will be, whereas sometimes the minor victories are the ones that really count. For example, everyone tells you how wonderful it is to have children, but in our experience 90% is struggle and 10% is totally, absolutely beautiful and validates the whole experience. Take this morning: Before I took my two-year-old son to school, we were rushing and rushing, and he said, “I want stay with you, Dad.” That made up for the whole last month when he’s had a sinus infection and has been whining nonstop. That kind of little victory, that’s what life is like and that’s what we’re trying to represent.

Q: In the show, Brett’s best friend and Michelle’s sister both move in with the married couple. What is the dynamic of this foursome?

MD: Alex and Brett are soul mates in a way, but the arrival of Tina makes things much more complex. What’s really interesting to us is how group dynamics change, depending on who’s in the group and how many are in the group.

Q: What does music bring to the show?

JD: We spent a lot of time on the music, more than on any other project, because we have four equally strong lead characters. Brett is into Rush, really intense prog-rock. Michelle is into ‘80s New Wave. Tina’s probably into hair bands, so in the pilot, you hear Sebastian Bach. We imagine that Alex grew up in Detroit, so he listens to old-school rap.

Q: What does “togetherness” mean to you?

JD: Togetherness is a double-edged sword. At first you think it can be a saccharine feeling, where you want to be with your family and snuggle up together. The other side is that you feel trapped, and the only thing that you want to do is escape.

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