How the Launch of HBO Max Sidelined Cinemax

The Four Percent


Usually it’s writers pitching ideas to TV networks, but at a meeting in 2012, it was executives at HBO who had a proposition for writers Michael D. Fuller and Graham Gordy. Their script about a Vietnam War vet turned hit man could wait in line with other dramas being developed for HBO’s flagship channel, or it could get fast-tracked into production for sister channel Cinemax.

The writers thought: Skinemax? That nickname had stuck to the pay-cable channel launched in 1980 because of its menu of late-night erotica. “I joked…


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