HBO Max Expands Podcast Lineup with Scripted Originals
|RADIO ONLINE | Wednesday, August 4, 2021|
HBO Max is putting its creative efforts to work and producing a slate of podcasts to extend and enhance its premium content. Since 2019, the HBO Max Podcast Program has grown from four podcasts to over 25 unique series, including popular and award-winning companion podcasts for hit series such as "Chernobyl," "Lovecraft Country" and more.
Now, plans are underway to expand beyond companion podcasts to include scripted audio originals like "Batman: The Audio Adventures," starring Jeffrey Wright; brand podcasts like "HBO Max Movie Club," look-back pods that pull from the streamer's library of content, both acquired and licensed titles and more.
"Our viewers tell us that, more than any other streaming platform, they want to discuss and dissect HBO Max programming with friends and family to extend the emotional experience after finishing an episode," said HBO Max Chief Strategy Officer Joshua Walker. "Our fans are at the center of everything we do, so we're following their lead by increasing our investment in podcasting, building on our successful and award-winning podcast program to deliver even more engaging, thoughtful content."
As part of this expansion, Michael Gluckstadt and Becky Rho, Co-Directors of the HBO Max Podcast Program, announced today on a panel hosted by Pineapple Street Studios at the Podcast Movement festival in Nashville that:
- "Batman: The Audio Adventures" will be released exclusively on HBO Max in the fall. In partnership with Warner Bros. and DC, this scripted audio original, Gotham City comes to lurid life in the theater of your mind... with a sensational pageant of technicolor villainy unlike any other on Earth.
- On September 9, HBO Max will launch its first look-back podcast in honor of the 20th anniversary of "Band of Brothers." Hosted by Roger Bennett, the program will kick off with an interview with executive producer Tom Hanks and will feature interviews with additional former castmates over the course of several weeks.
- Debuting this fall is "We Stay Looking," a sequel to Issa Rae's "Insecure" companion podcast, "Looking for Latoya," and the platform's first-ever scripted HBO podcast series. Made in partnership with Raedio and Tenderfoot TV, "Looking for Latoya," is a Webby Award-winning satirical series based on the show-within-the-show of the same name that sheds light on the way missing Black women are often underreported in the media.
- HBO Max is expanding its partnership with Audacy to include HBO Max and HBO Documentary titles. The streaming platform has worked with Audacy's Pineapple Street Studios since the inception of its podcast program, producing companion podcasts such as "Lovecraft Country Radio" and "The Chernobyl Podcast," which has been listened to over 13 million times.
- Launched in 2020, the streamer will continue its partnership with iHeartMedia, which has seen the co-production of successful podcasts for Max Original series including "Raised by Wolves," "Genera+ion," "Search Party" and "Murder at White House Farms," to add new titles and introduce new formats like an HBO Max brand-level podcast entitled, "HBO Max Movie Club" hosted by comedian Matt Rogers ("Las Culturistas").
- HBO Max has partnered with Kast Media to bring HBOMax users the ultimate The OC-rewatch podcast, "Welcome to The OC, Bitches" for in-app streaming. In each podcast episode, hosts Rachel Bilson and Melinda Clarke will take fans back to a particular episode of the classic series, share behind-the-scenes scoops, and interview guests who were part of The OC experience.
Gluckstadt added, "Our program is growing so rapidly because of the connection we offer fans to their favorite shows. Podcasts are extraordinary tools to extend the worlds of HBO Max shows and stories and we can't wait to see everyone's reaction to the fresh content coming this year and next."
All of these podcasts will be available to stream on HBO Max, with "Batman: The Audio Adventures" available exclusively on the platform. Other podcasts, like "HBO Max Movie Club" and "Trade Secrets," are also available wherever fans listen to podcasts.
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