SKY treats subscribers to exclusive Game of Thrones events

SKY subscribers who are die-hard Game of Thrones fans were recently given one-of-a-kind experiences: an ice skating spectacle inspired by HBO’s phenomenal hit TV series and an exclusive live screening of the final season premiere in one of the trendiest establishments in Poblacion, Makati.

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

On April 12 and 13, they witnessed Fire or Ice: A Musical Spectacle at SM Megamall’s Skating Rink.

There, they were treated to the outstanding performances by the country’s top figure skaters Joel Minas and Sofia Guidote.  Minas, who has bagged over 30 gold medals in various local and international skating competitions, masterfully brought King in the North Jon Snow to life on the ice. Guidote, on the other hand, in her role as Mother of Dragons Danaerys Targaryen, displayed the grace and athleticism that helped her bag the gold medal for the third year in a row at the Philippine National Competition.  Together, they gave absolutely stunning performances.

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

This remarkable event was made possible by SKY’s partnership with SM Lifestyle Entertainment Inc.

On April 15, selected SKY subscribers were invited to an exclusive live viewing party at the Johnnie Walker House in Poblacion.  SKY partnered with Diageo, the company behind the Johnnie Walker brand, in hosting the event.  Guests were treated to a sumptuous breakfast with food items that whimsically reference Game of Thrones characters and locations.  Ten bottles of White Walker, Johnnie Walker’s limited edition Scotch whiskey inspired by the show’s most chillingly enigmatic of characters, were also raffled off to lucky winners.

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

Of course, the real highlight of the event was the live screening of the Season 8’s premiere episode in full high definition on HBO HD (SKYcable ch 168), all the better for attendees to see (and obsess over) every detail as they happen onscreen.

During both events, attendees were asked to choose their side: vote for their choice on who will sit on the Iron Throne and rule over the seven kingdoms by the series’ end.

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

They were also serenaded by 4G String Quartet who performed their own haunting renditions of the show’s theme songs and musical scoring.

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

GOTs8 Premiere, Johnnie Walker House

Cosplayers from Westeros Cosplay PH also graced the events, bringing the show’s lead characters to life, and gamely posed with the show’s fans for selfies and photo opps.

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

With these two events, it is certainly a great time for a GOT fan to be a SKY subscriber!

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Fire or Ice, SM Skating Rink

Game of Thrones fans can look forward to more immersions into Westeros with the upcoming SKY Alive event at the SM Mall of Asia on April 27 and 28.  Here, they can participate in games and contests, interact with their favorite Game of Thrones characters through the attending cosplayers, be entertained by more performances by 4G String Quartet, and experience what it’s like to sit on the Iron Throne!

New episodes of the eighth and final season of GAME OF THRONES will air in Asia same time as the U.S. every Monday at 9am, with a same day encore at 10pm, exclusively on HBO GO and HBO (SKYcable ch 54 SD | 168 HD in Metro Manila).

Based on the popular book series “A Song of Ice and Fire,” by George R.R. Martin, this hit Emmy®-winning fantasy series chronicles an epic struggle for power in a vast and violent kingdom. Members of the ensemble cast for the seventh season included Emmy® and Golden Globe winner Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Aidan Gillen, Kit Harington, Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams. Season seven credits: executive producers, David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Carolyn Strauss, Frank Doelger, Bernadette Caulfield; co-executive producers, Bryan Cogman, Guymon Casady, Vince Gerardis, George R.R. Martin.

HBO GO is HBO’s online streaming service that gives subscribers a chance to watch and enjoy the world’s best movies, HBO Originals and more through the website or the mobile app. Subscription to the app also gives SKY subscribers free access to cable channels – HBO Hits, HBO Family, and HBO Signature.  To register your SKY account and subscribe to HBO GO, visit mysky.com.ph/hbogo.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Video Credits: SKYcable on Youtube

All other images are mine.

Check out my other recent posts on Game of Thrones:

 

Catch-up on GOT’s previous seasons via HBO GO on SKY

An epic throwback awaits “Game of Thrones” fans as SKY exclusively offers its subscribers free access to HBO GO, giving them a chance to relive the phenomenal television series anytime, anywhere until April 15.

The offer will delight all kinds of viewers, whether they’re new to the world of Westeros or already hooked to the behemoth series, as all seven seasons are available for streaming.

As the show’s previous season saw the Night King heading to Eastwatch with the undead Viserion and the White Walkers marching South, this season is set to bow out with its biggest episodes ever. With only six episodes, Season 8 is expected to be packed with epic turns of events, including its biggest battle—bigger than what many fans consider its most monumental, the massacre at Hardhome. Fans can also anticipate the formation of new alliances.

HBO GO is HBO’s online streaming service that gives subscribers a chance to watch and enjoy the world’s best movies, HBO Originals and more through the website or the mobile app. Subscription to the app also gives SKY subscribers free access to cable channels – HBO Hits, HBO Family, and HBO Signature.

The free access to HBO GO is available to all digital SKYcable and SKY Fiber Unli Broadband + HD Cable TV Plans 8Mbps and 16Mbps subscribers nationwide with HBO channel in their cable line-up. Download the HBO GO app now and register to catch up in time for the premiere of Season 8 on April 15, at 9:00AM. Visit mysky.com.ph/freehbogo for details.

For more exciting updates on “Game of Thrones,” visit mysky.com.ph/got.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Promo details provided by SKY in a recent press release.

Check out my posts on HBO shows:

 

Game of Thrones: The Last Watch feature documentary premieres May 27 on HBO and HBO GO

For a year, acclaimed British filmmaker Jeanie Finlay was embedded on the set of the hit HBO series GAME OF THRONES, chronicling the creation of the show’s most ambitious and complicated season.

The feature documentary, GAME OF THRONES: THE LAST WATCH will debut in Asia same time as the U.S. on Monday, 27 May, one week after the series finale, at 9am, exclusively on HBO GO and HBO. The documentary delves deep into the mud and blood to reveal the tears and triumphs involved in the challenge of bringing the fantasy world of Westeros to life in the very real studios, fields and car-parks of Northern Ireland. GAME OF THRONES: THE LAST WATCH will also have a same day encore at 10pm.

Made with unprecedented access, GAME OF THRONES: THE LAST WATCH is an up-close and personal report from the trenches of production, following the crew and the cast as they contend with extreme weather, punishing deadlines and an ever-excited fandom hungry for spoilers.

Much more than a “making of” documentary, this is a funny, heart-breaking story, told with wit and intimacy, about the bittersweet pleasures of what it means to create a world – and then have to say goodbye to it.

Jeanie Finlay’s previous credits include the documentaries “Seahorse,” “Orion: The Man Who Would Be King,” “Pantomime,” “The Great Hip Hop Hoax,” “Sound It Out” and “Goth Cruise”. GAME OF THRONES: THE LAST WATCH is her eighth feature film.

GAME OF THRONES: THE LAST WATCH is a Glimmer Films production for HBO; director, Jeanie Finlay; executive producers, David Benioff. D.B. Weiss, Bernadette Caulfield; producers, Jeanie Finlay, Rachel Hooper, Martin Mahon; editor, Alice Powell; filmed by Jeanie Finlay, Mark Bushnell, Louise Liddy, Aaron Black, Richard Jephcote; composer, Hannah Peel.

The eighth and final season of GAME OF THRONES will debut in Asia same time as the U.S. on Monday, 15 April at 9am, with a same day encore at 10pm, exclusively on HBO GO and HBO. New episodes will premiere every Monday at the same time.

Based on the popular book series “A Song of Ice and Fire,” by George R.R. Martin, this hit Emmy®-winning fantasy series chronicles an epic struggle for power in a vast and violent kingdom. Members of the ensemble cast for the seventh season included Emmy® and Golden Globe winner Peter Dinklage, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Lena Headey, Emilia Clarke, Aidan Gillen, Kit Harington, Sophie Turner and Maisie Williams. Season seven credits: executive producers, David Benioff, D.B. Weiss, Carolyn Strauss, Frank Doelger, Bernadette Caulfield; co-executive producers, Bryan Cogman, Guymon Casady, Vince Gerardis, George R.R. Martin.

HBO is available on SKYcable Ch. 54 SD/Ch. 168 HD (For Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, Lipa-Batangas) or on Ch. 402 SD/710 HD (For Bacolod, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, General Santos, Iloilo). SKYdirect subscribers can watch it on Ch. 22 HD. HBO Original Series as well as live channels are also available for streaming on HBO GO which is exclusively available to SKY subscribers. To subscribe, call 418-0000 or your local SKY office or visit www.mysky.com.ph.

Until April 15, SKYcable subscribers can watch all episodes of Game of Thrones Seasons 1 to 7 on demand via HBO GO for free. Simply download the app and register your SKYcable account. For more details, click here.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Series details and images provided by HBO in a recent press release.

Check out my posts on HBO shows:

 

New HBO drama series Gentleman Jack debuts April 23 exclusively on HBO GO

Starring BAFTA Award Winner Suranne Jones, The Series Tells The Story Of A Woman Who Had A Passion For Life And A Mind For Business, And Bucked Society’s Expectations At Every Turn.

The HBO drama series GENTLEMAN JACK begins its eight-episode season, same time as the U.S. on Tuesday 23 April at 10am exclusively on HBO GO. Created, written and co-directed by Sally Wainwright (“Happy Valley,” “Last Tango in Halifax”), and starring BAFTA Award winner Suranne Jones (“Doctor Foster,” “Save Me”), GENTLEMAN JACK tells the story of a woman who had a passion for life and a mind for business, and bucked society’s expectations at every turn.

Set in the complex, changing world of 1832 Halifax, West Yorkshire – the cradle of the evolving Industrial Revolution – GENTLEMAN JACK focuses on landowner Anne Lister, who is determined to transform the fate of her faded ancestral home, Shibden Hall, by reopening the coal mines and marrying well. The charismatic, single-minded, swashbuckling Lister – who dresses head-to-toe in black and charms her way into high society – has no intention of marrying a man.

The story examines Lister’s relationships with her family, servants, tenants and industrial rivals and, most importantly, would-be wife. Based in historical fact, the real-life Anne Lister’s story was recorded in the four million words of her diaries, and the most intimate details of her life, once hidden in a secret code, have been decoded and revealed for the series.

GENTLEMAN JACK co-stars: Sophie Rundle (“Bodyguard,” “Peaky Blinders”) as Ann Walker, the wealthy heiress on whom Anne Lister sets her sights as a prospective wife; Gemma Whelan (HBO’s “Game of Thrones”; “The Moorside”) as Anne Lister’s sister, Marian; Timothy West (“Last Tango in Halifax,” “Bleak House”) as Jeremy Lister, the sisters’ father; and Gemma Jones (“God’s Own Country,” “Bridget Jones’s Diary”) as Aunt Anne Lister.

The additional cast includes: Katherine Kelly (“Happy Valley,” CINEMAX’s “Strike Back”) as Elizabeth Sutherland, Ann Walker’s sister; Sofie Gråbøl (“The Killing,” “Fortitude”) as Queen Marie of Denmark; Stephanie Cole (“Waiting for God,” “Still Open All Hours”) as Ann Walker’s aunt; Peter Davison (“Liar,” “Doctor Who”) as William Priestley, Ann Walker’s cousin; Amelia Bullmore (“Happy Valley,” “Scott & Bailey”) as Eliza Priestley, William Priestley’s wife; Vincent Franklin (“Cucumber,” “Happy Valley”) as Christopher Rawson, a businessman and fierce rival to Anne Lister; Shaun Dooley (“Gunpowder,” “Broadchurch”) as Jeremiah, Christopher’s brother and business partner; Joe Armstrong (“Darkest Hour,” “Happy Valley”) as Samuel Washington; Jodhi May (“Genius,” “The Amazing Mrs Pritchard”) as Vere Hobart; Rosie Cavaliero (“Hold the Sunset,” “Unforgotten”) as Elizabeth Cordingley; Thomas Howes (“Downton Abbey,” “United”) as John Booth; Jessica Baglow (“Waterloo Road”) as Rachael Hemingway; and newcomers Albane Courtois as Eugénie Pierre and Ben Hunter as Joseph Booth.

GENTLEMAN JACK is directed by Sally Wainwright, Sarah Harding (“Vikings,” “Queer as Folk”) and Jennifer Perrott (“Doctor Who”); produced by Lookout Point for HBO and BBC One; executive producers, Sally Wainwright, Faith Penhale and Laura Lankester for Lookout Point and Ben Irving for BBC One; producer, Phil Collinson.

HBO Original Series as well as live channels are also available for streaming on HBO GO which is exclusively available to SKY subscribers in the Philippines. To subscribe, call 418-0000 or your local SKY office or visit www.mysky.com.ph.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Series details and images provided by HBO in a recent press release.

Check out my posts on HBO shows:

HBO Asia announces new lineup of Asian Original Productions

HBO Asia unveiled a line-up of brand new Asian original productions that are scheduled to premiere soon. Since the regional network’s first original production in 2012, HBO Asia has been committed to ramp up the number of quality Asian original content to their audiences in the region and globally. To date, HBO Asia has produced and aired fifteen HBO Asia Original productions and is expanding its repertoire further in the coming years.

HBO Asia recently hosted a press conference in Hong Kong to further showcase four upcoming projects that included an anthology drama series, a crime drama, a sci-fi thriller and the second season of a coming-of-age drama series. Actors Vivian Hsu, David Wang and James Wen, directors Eric Khoo and Billy Christian and executive producer, Cheang Pou-Soi were present to share insights about the upcoming HBO Asia Original productions. All upcoming HBO Asia Originals will be available in the Philippines exclusively on HBO Asia’s network of channels including HBO (SKYcable channel 54 SD and 168 HD in Metro Manila) and HBO’s online streaming platform, HBO GO.

Mr. Jonathan Spink, CEO of HBO Asia said, “Over the past 7 years, we recognise the significance and importance of locally produced programming. Since 2012, the number of Asian original productions we have done has been increasing and they have all proven to be very effective for us. We are encouraged to learn that our Asian productions are working well across the region, especially those in local languages.” He further adds, “We maintain our commitment to producing outstanding programming and will continuously aim to present our content to our audience in the region, in an easily accessible way. We will continue to produce the highest quality content that the HBO brand represents and showcase to the world the best Asia has to offer.”

Series premiering soon on HBO Asia’s network of channels include (in alphabetical order):

DREAM RAIDER is HBO Asia’s first science fiction drama series. DREAM RAIDER is an eight-episode hour-long series that brings together production expertise from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan featuring cast and crew including actors Vivian Hsu, David Wang, Jason Wang, Weber Yang and Ellen Wu, executive producer, renowned filmmaker, Cheang Pou-Soi, directors, Daniel Fu and Simon Hung, and producer, Freeman Xiang. Set in the near future, DREAM RAIDER features a misfit team of scientists and cops that are trying to get to the bottom of a criminal conspiracy that exploits human consciousness. The series opens with a criminal police officer that is investigating a case of missing girls and uncovers a mysterious cutting-edge technology that enables them to enter the dreamscapes of others to find the truth. The series is produced with the support of the Taipei Film Commission and Taipei Cultural Foundation.

HBO Originals

FOOD LORE is an eight-episode hour-long anthology series that explores the human condition with narratives inspired by and showcased through the perspectives of Asian cuisines, weaving tales of the tastes and aromas that have filled the Asian souls – tales of longing and forbidden passion, of connection and loss, of childhood memory. Helmed by award-winning Singaporean filmmaker Eric Khoo, the series is shot in eight countries across Asia and directed by some of Asia’s most talented storytellers including Don Aravind (Singapore), Billy Christian (Indonesia), Takumi Saitoh (Japan), Ho Yuhang (Malaysia), Erik Matti (Philippines), Pen-Ek Ratanaruang (Thailand) and Phan Dang Di (Vietnam). FOOD LORE is produced as part of a two-year partnership with the Infocomm Media Development Authority (IMDA) in Singapore. Through a series of workshops and collaborations with local companies and talent on HBO Asia Original productions, the partnership aims to develop the content production capabilities of Singapore’s media industry.

HBO Originals

THE TEENAGE PSYCHIC is HBO Asia’s second returning series, following the success of the first season. The eight-episode hour-long second season of the coming-of-age Taiwan drama series returns with Kuo Shu Yau  reprising her lead role as Xiao Zhen, a psychic born with the ability to see spirits and learning to use her abilities to help others. Starring alongside her will be new cast members including two-time Golden Bell Award-winning actress, Wen Chen-Ling  and rising star, Fandy Fan. The new season of THE TEENAGE PSYCHIC sees Xiao Zhen back from her summer break and determined to have a fresh start at school, but life is not that simple, especially when she is still coming to terms with the loss of the love of her life. Things get even more complicated with the arrival of Zhan Xiao Tong, played by Wen Chen-Ling, a soft spoken yet resourceful new member of the drama club. Juggling the multiple pressures from school, the drama club and the demands of the spirit world, things are about to take a turn for the worse for the 17-year-old. THE TEENAGE PSYCHIC season two will be directed by up-and-coming director Liu Yan-Fu (劉彥甫). Chen Ho-Yu, director of THE TEENAGE PSYCHIC season one, will executive produce.

HBO Originals

THE WORLD BETWEEN US is a ten-part hour-long Taiwan drama series that follows the aftermath of a mass-shooting where all parties involved – the killer, the victims, the victims’ families, the media and the defense teams, whose fates are all intertwined. Shot entirely in Taiwan, the series features an all-star ensemble cast from Taiwan including Alyssa Chia, James Wen and Wu Kang-Jen. The series is directed by award-winning filmmaker, Lin Chun-Yang ) and written by the renowned award-winning screenwriter, Lu Shih-Yuan . The series is produced by Taiwanese broadcaster, Public Television Service (PTS), and will be jointly distributed by HBO Asia and CATCHPLAY outside of Asia. THE WORLD BETWEEN US premieres in Asia on Sunday, March 24 with two back-to-back episodes from 9pm onwards exclusively on HBO GO and HBO. Two new episodes will debut at the same time every Sunday. The series will also be available on HBO On Demand.

HBO Originals

2018 was a great year for HBO Asia Original productions. MISS SHERLOCK, the network’s first Japanese original drama series, and the first HBO Asia Original documentary, THE TALWARS: BEHIND CLOSED DOORS were both recognised at the Asia Academy Creative Awards 2018. MISS SHERLOCK was the national winner for Japan under the categories for Best Drama Series, Best Actress in a Leading Role and Best Actress in a Supporting Role. THE TALWARS: BEHIND CLOSED DOORS was the national winner for Singapore under the Best Documentary Series category. In addition, all six episodes from FOLKLORE, HBO Asia’s first horror anthology series, were recognised at major International film festivals that included the Toronto International Film Festival (Toronto, Canada), SITGES International Fantastic Film Festival of Catalonia (Barcelona, Spain), Fantastic Fest (Texas, USA), and selected for competition at the International Panorama section of Series Mania International Festival (Lille, France).

HBO Asia Original productions have also reached audiences worldwide. Select titles are available in territories outside of Asia including Spain (on HBO España), Sweden, Norway, Finland and Denmark (on HBO Nordic), and in Central European territories including Hungary, Czech Republic, Poland, Romania and Croatia (on HBO Europe). They are also available to HBO’s U.S. subscribers across the channel’s platforms, including HBO GO®, HBO NOW®, HBO On Demand®, and participating television and streaming partner platforms. These productions most recently included MISS SHERLOCK, FOLKLORE and GRISSE, the network’s first Asian-inspired Western period drama.

HBO is available on SKYcable Ch. 54 SD/Ch. 168 HD (For Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, Lipa-Batangas) or on Ch. 402 SD/710 HD (For Bacolod, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, General Santos, Iloilo). SKYdirect subscribers can watch it on Ch. 22 HD. HBO Original Series as well as live channels are also available for streaming on HBO GO which is exclusively available to SKY subscribers. To subscribe, call 418-0000 or your local SKY office or visit www.mysky.com.ph.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Series details and images provided by HBO in a recent press release.

Check out my posts on HBO shows:

 

Four things I like about Captain Marvel

The first solo female-led film in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (since Black Widow is part of an ensemble in Avengers and the Wasp co-headlined Ant-Man and the Wasp), Captain Marvel carries with it a lot of expectations.

The movie is centered on Carol Danvers (played by Oscar winner Brie Larson), a US Air Force pilot who was given superhuman powers when she absorbed the energy from an explosion.

Being an MCU geek, I couldn’t pass up the chance to see it on its first day of theatrical release. While I’ve been seeing mixed reactions about the movie on the web, let me share four reasons why I think it’s awesome.

I will try to minimize spoilers in this blog post but there will be some references to scenes in the movie or other MCU releases so be warned…

Here be spoilers.

One: It passes the Bechdel test.

Why would I start my review with the movie’s most academic aspect?

Well, much has been hyped about Captain Marvel being the first female-led MCU outing, and I’m glad to see, with its depiction of the abiding friendship between Carol Danvers and Maria Rambeau (played by Lashana Lynch), that it passes the one of the most basic of standards for female representation in fiction.

The Bechdel Test asks whether there are at least two women in the movie who talk to each other about anything other than a man.

Danvers’ reunion with Maria after a long separation empowers and reaffirms her without needing to include a male in their conversations.

Two: The absence of a love interest.

Nope, Captain Marvel doesn’t need a love interest to inspire her or stir her to action. Her notable interactions were with her Kree mentor Yon-Rogg (played by Jude Law), her friend Maria Rambeau, and a young, quippy Nick Fury (played by CGI-de-aged Samuel L. Jackson), not with a potential boyfriend.

Oh, and the fact that the movie didn’t have the need to explain why there’s no father-figure in the Rambeau household is remarkable.

Three: Younger and work-in-progress Fury.

Since Iron Man 2 to Avengers: Infinity War, Nick Fury has always shown up as nothing less than the BAMF director of SHIELD.

Here, he is still a desk jockey, starting to navigate his way through the realization that a bigger universe exists other than the one he’s known. His banters and quips with Carol Danvers are light and breezy, an indication of the friendship and respect between them that will carry over to when Captain Marvel makes her appearance in the upcoming Avengers: Endgame.

Oh, and we see a young Phil Coulson (played by a similarly CGI-de-aged Clark Gregg) in the movie as well, just when I was despairing of ever seeing him again in an MCU movie after his demise in Avengers (and subsequent resurrection in the TV series Agents of SHIELD).

Four: The nods to the 90s

Being a child of the 90s myself, I found myself excited to see the various references to the decade, from Captain Marvel’s crash landing into a Blockbuster Video store, the boxy computers with the slow loading icon and the on-point musical accompaniment to key scenes (No Doubt’s “Just A Girl” for instance).

For me, Captain Marvel does an admirable job in introducing a new addition to MCU’s superhero roster, and tying her story to the rest of the films (guess where Fury got the idea to name his brainchild project the Avengers Initiative).

To some, it may be another cog in the machine that is the MCU, but really, what do cogs do? They keep the machine going.

What do you think of the movie? Share your thoughts in the comments.

Starring Jeffrey Wright, HBO Films’ O.G. premieres Feb 24 exclusively on HBO GO and HBO

The HBO Films drama O.G. debuts same time as the U.S. on Sunday, February 24 at 11am exclusively on HBO GO and HBO. The film repeats on the same day at 11.30pm on HBO. Starring Jeffrey Wright (Emmy® winner for HBO’s “Angels in America,” two-time Emmy® nominee for HBO’s “Westworld”), the film is directed by Madeleine Sackler (Emmy® winner for HBO’s “Dangerous Acts Starring the Unstable Elements of Belarus”) and written by Stephen Belber (Emmy® nominee for HBO’s “The Laramie Project”).

O.G. follows Louis (Wright), once the head of a prominent prison gang, in the final weeks of his 24-year sentence. His impending release is upended when he takes new arrival Beecher (Carter), who is being courted by gang leadership, under his wing. Coming to grips with the indelibility of his crime and the challenge of reentering society, Louis finds his freedom hanging in the balance as he struggles to save Beecher.

Also starring Theothus Carter and William Fichtner (“Crash”), O.G. premiered at the 2018 Tribeca Film Festival, where Wright won the award for Best Actor in a U.S. Narrative Feature Film. It was filmed over a five-week period at Indiana’s maximum-security Pendleton Correctional Facility.

Groundbreaking in that it was filmed in an active prison, with several of the incarcerated men and prison staff appearing as first-time actors, O.G. takes an intimate and unflinching look at the journey of one man at the precipice of freedom.

The film is executive produced by Sharon Chang, Kareem “Biggs” Burke, Mark Steele, Nic Marshall; produced by Madeleine Sackler, Boyd Holbrook, Celine Rattray, Trudie Styler, Nick Gordon, Trevor Matthews, Stephen Belber and Ged Dickersin.

Director Madeleine Sackler describes the inspiration behind the film’s uniquely realistic approach, noting, “There have been so many prison films that it’s become a genre of its own. To me, when a type of story becomes a genre, it can lose its uniqueness or its specificity in the storytelling.

“My goal was to disregard the prison genre and start from scratch, starting with one character, a man preparing to leave after many years behind bars. To do that as authentically as possible, to truly understand and portray that experience, I wanted to make the film in close collaboration with people going through the experience themselves, so I started calling different departments of correction around the country. And I was very lucky when the state of Indiana called me back.

“This film wouldn’t be what it is if we hadn’t made it as a collaboration with the prison and with hundreds of men incarcerated there. And to have two films come out of the experience, one fiction and one nonfiction, is very exciting. We were able to explore many different themes.”

For Jeffrey Wright, it was a unique experience filming in an active prison, which helped him step inside his character. He explains, “It was absolutely necessary for me to wrap my head and my body around who this character was and what the story was that we were trying to tell. It’s a pretty informative place. It’s an affecting place. There’s an energy inside that place unlike no other, no other. It’s heavy, it’s kind of laden with trauma. It’s just molecularly heavy inside, and it certainly informed our understanding of the story, of the issues, and in my case, the character that I was playing.”

Director Sackler describes her introduction to Theothus Carter, saying, “His audition was incredible. We were watching hundreds of people in one week, and you can’t imagine the array of men who are incarcerated, and the talent and depth that they bring to the dialogue. There’s just no replacement for the real way that people move and interact and talk. And then Theothus came in, and he just blew me and the casting director away. And then he worked harder than anyone else.”

Wright says, “Theothus was all business, and he has a force to him. He has capabilities that we see through this film, that he had never tapped into in a way as constructive as this, perhaps in his lifetime.”

O.G. is an HBO Films and Maven Pictures Presentation in association with Brookstreet Pictures, a Great Curve Films production of a Madeleine Sackler film. The behind-the-scenes team includes director of photography Wolfgang Held; editor Frédéric Thoraval; production designer Michael Bricker; and costume designer Heidi Bivens. Music by Nathaniel Méchaly; casting by Richard Hicks.

After the screenplay for O.G. had been developed and Sackler was prepping to shoot the film, she began collaborating with 13 men incarcerated at the facility on a nonfiction film. In IT’S A HARD TRUTH AIN’T IT, co-directed by Sackler and those men, several of whom were also first-time actors, they study filmmaking as a vehicle to explore their memories and examine how they ended up with decades-long sentences. Animated sequences by Yoni Goodman (“Waltz with Bashir”) bring their stories to life.

Sackler says, “In a way, O.G. and IT’S A HARD TRUTH AIN’T IT are two different sides of the same coin. In O.G., Louis is preparing to leave prison after 24 years of incarceration. In IT’S A HARD TRUTH AIN’T IT, the men look deeper into the paths that got them to prison in the first place. In that sense, neither film is about being in prison, but something deeper.”

HBO is available on SKYcable Ch. 54 SD/Ch. 168 HD (For Metro Manila, Cavite, Laguna, Bulacan, Lipa-Batangas) or on Ch. 402 SD/710 HD (For Bacolod, Baguio, Cebu, Davao, Dumaguete, General Santos, Iloilo). SKYdirect subscribers can watch it on Ch. 22 HD. HBO Original Series as well as live channels are also available for streaming on HBO GO which is exclusively available to SKY subscribers. To subscribe, call 418-0000 or your local SKY office or visit www.mysky.com.ph.

Disclosure: I work for SKY and part of my job is promoting its products and services, especially the content it provides to its subscribers. I consider being able to share my love for TV shows and movies and the experience of watching and talking about them with like-minded people some of the biggest perks of my job.

Series details and image provided by HBO in a recent press release.

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