Lisa Kudrow, Matthew Perry, Jennifer Aniston, David Schwimmer, Courteney Cox, Matt LeBlanc on “Friends.”
HBO is taking it to the Max.
WarnerMedia announced Tuesday that its forthcoming streaming service has been dubbed HBO Max. It will combine HBO programming, which includes hit series like “Game of Thrones” and “Big Little Lies,” with a vast library of original content, plus programming from entertainment brands such as Warner Bros., DC Entertainment, TNT, Cartoon Network and CW.
The new service, now due to launch in spring of 2020 – months later than initially planned – will also be the exclusive streaming home of all 236 episodes of “Friends,” which is streaming on Netflix until Dec. 31, as well as other beloved TV series like “The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air” and “Pretty Little Liars.”WarnerMedia said that HBO Max will debut with 10,000 hours of content.
“Friends” is one of Netflix’s most popular series, according to Nielsen estimates, along with “The Office,” which Comcast is clawing back in 2021 for its own planned streaming service.
Original programming will also premiere on HBO Max, including “Dune: The Sisterhood,” adapted from Brian Herbert and Kevin Anderson’s book inspired by Frank Herbert’s “Dune”; thriller series “The Flight Attendant,” starring Kaley Cuoco; “Love Life,” a half-hour romantic comedy anthology series starring Anna Kendrick; and an animated “Gremlins” series.
The full list of brands incorporated into HBO Max includes” HBO, Warner Bros., New Line, DC Entertainment, CNN, TNT, TBS, truTV, CW, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Adult Swim, Crunchyroll, Rooster Teeth and Looney Tunes, which will give the streaming service TV and movies aimed at multiple age groups. (New CW series premiering this fall will become available, but at a later date; existing series will remain on Netflix as long as they remain on the air.)
HBO Max joins a flurry of new streaming services premiering in the next year or so including Apple TV+, due this fall, and Disney+, which launches November 12. Warner Media did not announce a specific debut date or price for HBO Max, but it’s expected to cost slightly more than the existing HBO Now streaming service, limited to HBO content.
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