Facebook first as Starz hoops LeBron, Patrick Stewart for sample of original series


Joseph O'Halloran

| 18 August 2015

Leading US content company Starz is to use Facebook as the initial platform for a comedy block sampling featuring LeBron James and Patrick Stewart prior to the series premiere on traditional channels.

The new block will feature the first two episodes of original series Blunt Talk and the entire six-episode first season of Survivor’s Remorse starring King James and the Knight of The Realm respectively. The basketball legend has already begun hosting free access to the premiere episode from season two of Survivor's Remorse directly on his Facebook page exclusively for his 22 million followers, while the veteran actor did likewise with his series for Facebook followers.

On-demand and online sampling opportunities of the two Blunt Talk episodes and first season of Survivor's Remorse were made available beginning 15 August and will continue for another ten days via select US cable, satellite and telco affiliates, Starz.com, STARZ ON DEMAND and the free STARZ PLAY app for all users in the US. Survivor's Remorse season one is also available on iTunes, Amazon Instant Video, Vudu, Sony Entertainment Network and Xbox Video.

"Starz has sampled many new original series on multiple platforms – including Facebook – over the past few years and we continue to witness first-hand the importance of engaging fans in the social media community who have migrated the 'water cooler talk' to a much bigger and virtual break room," said Starz CEO Chris Albrecht. "The network and our shows, including Power and Outlander, are definitely benefitting from the tremendous online community engagement."

Alison Hoffman, executive vice president of marketing for Starz, added: "Having LeBron James and Patrick Stewart share early previews of their shows directly with their passionate Facebook fans is an exciting opportunity for Starz. It's a great way to get viewers watching, buzzing and sharing our content."