WarnerMedia has announced its long-awaited streaming service, dubbing the direct-to-consumer offering HBO Max. It will be loaded with content from, HBO of course, but also from Warner Bros., New Line, DC Entertainment, The CW, Turner Classic Movies, Cartoon Network, Crunchyroll, Looney Tunes and more—not to mention a slate of new originals.
HBO Max is launching in spring 2020 with 10,000 hours of premium content. And will be aimed at everyone from families with young children to adults. There is no word yet on which territories it will be available in.
However, most of the Max Originals (as they’re being called) are focused more on adults and young adults, including two films from Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine studio and four YA movies from Greg Berlanti. But there are a few kid-friendly titles in the mix.
Warner Bros. Animation and Amblin Entertainment are creating an animated Gremlins series based on the original movie (pictured). Amblin is owned by Stephen Spielberg, who is also producing an Animaniacs reboot for Hulu and an animated Jurassic World spin-off for Netflix.
Some of the other big creatives involved in original HBO Max programming include Denis Villeneuve, Paul Feig, Anna Kendrick, Jason Bateman, Jordan Peele, J.J. Abrams, Nicole Kidman, Winona Ryder and Robert Downey Jr.
The service is also taking back some big shows from Netflix and holds the exclusive streaming rights to all 236 episodes of Friends, as well as episodes of The Fresh Prince of Bel Air and Pretty Little Liars.
The direct-to-consumer team is led by Casey Bloys (president of programming at HBO), Kevin Reilly (chief content officer at HBO Max, overseeing all originals and library content), Tony Goncalves (oversees HBO Max development)and Andy Forssell (general manager of HBO Max).
The news comes shortly after Warner Bros. named Ann Sarnoff as its new CEO, following Kevin Tsujihara’s departure in March. Sarnoff is the company’s first female CEO and will be leading all of the kids and YA divisions, including Cartoon Network.
More to come…