PBS Bows Discount Deal on PBS Kids, PBS Documentaries and PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channels

PBS Distribution has announced an early Black Friday through Cyber Monday deal for the PBS Masterpiece, PBS Documentaries, and PBS Kids Prime Video Channels. Each channel will be available to new subscribers at a subscription rate of 99 cents per month for two months beginning Nov. 23 and running through Nov. 29.

The standard subscription rate for the PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel is $5.99 per month with an Amazon Prime membership. The standard subscription rate for the PBS Documentaries Prime Video Channel is $3.99 per month with an Amazon Prime membership. The standard subscription rate for the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel is $4.99 per month with an Amazon Prime membership.

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The PBS Masterpiece Prime Video Channel offers British and international dramas such as “Masterpiece: All Creatures Great and Small” and “Masterpiece: Sanditon,” mystery-thriller series such as “Professor T,” and “Masterpiece: Miss Scarlet and The Duke,” as well as award-winning series from around the globe through “Walter Presents.” On the PBS Documentaries Prime Video Channel, viewers can stream the entire library of Ken Burns programs, including the new “Muhammad Ali” docuseries. Also available, Frontline’s “A Thousand Cuts” featuring Nobel Peace Prize-winning journalist Maria Ressa as well as films from “American Masters,” “Independent Lens,” “Nature” and “Nova.” On the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel, viewers can explore more than 1,400 hours of learning adventures for kids and watch PBS Kids series such as the newly launched series from Sesame Street’s Sonia Manzano, “Alma’s Way.” Other series include “Donkey Hodie,” “Wild Kratts,” “Arthur,” “Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood,” “Odd Squad,” “Hero Elementary,” “Elinor Wonders Why,” and the Peabody award winning series “Molly of Denali,” among others.

Apple TV+ Sets Jan. 28 Premiere of Murder-Mystery Comedy Series ‘The Afterparty’

The Apple TV+ murder-mystery comedy series “The Afterparty” will debut on the SVOD service Jan. 28.

From Academy Award, BAFTA and Golden Globe Award winners Chris Miller and Phil Lord (Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse, The Lego Movie, 21 Jump Street), the eight-episode first season of the series will launch with three episodes, followed by one new episode weekly each Friday.

“The Afterparty” stars Tiffany Haddish (Girls Trip, Like a Boss), Sam Richardson (The Tomorrow War, “Veep”), Zoë Chao (“Love Life,” Downhill), Ben Schwartz (“Space Force,” “House of Lies”), Ike Barinholtz (“The Mindy Project,” Neighbors), Ilana Glazer (“Broad City”), Jamie Demetriou (“Fleabag,” “Stath Lets Flats”) and Dave Franco (The Rental, The Disaster Artist).

Created and directed by Miller, the series is centered on a murder mystery at a high school reunion. Each episode explores a different character’s account of the fateful evening in question, all through the lens of popular film genres and unique visuals to match the storyteller’s perspective.

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In addition to directing, Miller serves as showrunner and is executive producing alongside Lord through the pair’s production banner, Lord Miller. Tony and Emmy-nominated writer, producer and performer Anthony King (“Search Party,” “Dead to Me”) will also executive produce the series. Lord Miller’s VP of Television Aubrey Lee is a producer on the series, which was produced for Apple by TriStar TV and Sony Pictures Television as part of Lord and Miller’s five-year overall television deal.

 

Doc ‘Becoming Cousteau’ Launching on Disney+ Nov. 24

Becoming Cousteau, a National Geographic documentary film on the iconic French explorer, will launch on Disney+ Nov. 24.

From Academy Award-nominated director Liz Garbus, Academy Award-winning producer Dan Cogan, producer Mridu Chandra and Story Syndicate, the film had its world premiere at the 2021 Telluride Film Festival and went on to win the Grierson Award for Best Documentary Feature at the 2021 BFI London Film Festival and the Critic’s Choice Documentary Award for Best Science/Nature Documentary.

Becoming Cousteau debuted theatrically on Oct. 22. 

Capt. Jacques-Yves Cousteau was one of the 20th century’s great explorers, a filmmaker and beloved adventurer who documented the wonders below the ocean with pioneering equipment that yielded a Cannes Film Festival-winning film, two Academy Awards, and a pair of iconic and long-running television shows, “The Undersea World of Jacques Cousteau” and “The Cousteau Odyssey.” His work became synonymous with life in the sea and on his famous boat, the Calypso. He authored more than 50 books on his aquatic life and invented the Aqua-Lung, advancing the boundaries of scuba diving. Yet, it was as an environmentalist that Cousteau would have his most lasting impacts, alerting the world about the warming oceans decades before the climate crisis made headlines. He was instrumental in protecting Antarctica and took part in the first Earth Summit.

In creating the film, Garbus poured through 550 hours of archival material and rarely-seen footage. Becoming Cousteau shines a spotlight on the man many grew up worshipping, yet most actually knew very little about. After prospecting for oil companies to support his globe-trotting adventuring, he had a late-in-life awakening and became the first great advocate for ocean preservation. Cousteau led a somewhat fractured family life, checkered with great loss, but he remained true to his one great love — the sea. 

More than 100 hours of audio journal entries, interviews and observations from collaborators and crew members add to the film. The documentary also chronicles his first wife and collaborator Simone Melchior (known aboard the Calypso as “The Shepherdess”), his family experiences, his second wife Francine Triplet, the creation of The Cousteau Society and the work they do, and his evolution into one of the most important environmental voices of the 20th century.

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“Jacques Cousteau was an adventurer and inventor who became a passionate environmentalist later in life” director Liz Garbus said in a statement. “He was not born a protector of the seas — it was something he grew to appreciate as he witnessed  the undersea world changing before his very own eyes. I hope Cousteau’s incredibly entertaining, epic life shows how much we can all evolve in life and in our attitude towards our place on the Earth. Cousteau is a true hero for our age, and his life story points the way to a better future.”

 

HBO Max to Stream ‘Harry Potter’ Retrospective With Franchise Stars New Year’s Day

Daniel Radcliffe, Rupert Grint and Emma Watson will join filmmaker Chris Columbus and other cast members from the eight “Harry Potter” films for the retrospective special Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts streaming on HBO Max beginning at midnight Jan. 1.

The retrospective celebrates the anniversary of the franchise’s first film, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone, which premiered 20 years ago on Nov. 16. 

The special will also debut on TBS and Cartoon Network in spring 2022 ahead of the Warner Bros. Pictures theatrical debut of Fantastic Beasts: The Secrets of Dumbledore and will roll out globally with more details to come.
 
Alumni of the film franchise will join the tribute, including Helena Bonham Carter, Robbie Coltrane, Ralph Fiennes, Jason Isaacs, Gary Oldman, Imelda Staunton, Tom Felton, James Phelps, Oliver Phelps, Mark Williams, Bonnie Wright, Alfred Enoch, Matthew Lewis, Evanna Lynch and Ian Hart, among others.

The program will include making-of segments and interviews and will also celebrate the legacy of the “Harry Potter” film franchise.
 
“It has been an incredible journey since the debut of the Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone film, and witnessing how it has evolved into this remarkable interconnected universe has been magical to say the least,” Tom Ascheim, president of Warner Bros. Global Kids, Young Adults and Classics, said in a statement. “This retrospective is a tribute to everyone whose lives were touched by this cultural phenomenon — from the talented cast and crew who poured their heart and soul into this extraordinary film franchise to the passionate fans who continue to keep the Wizarding World spirit alive 20 years later.”  

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Produced by Warner Bros. Unscripted Television in association with Warner Horizon at the iconic Warner Bros. Studio Tour London — The Making of Harry Potter, Harry Potter 20th Anniversary: Return to Hogwarts is executive produced by Casey Patterson of Casey Patterson Entertainment (A West Wing Special to Benefit When We All Vote) and Pulse Films (Beastie Boys Story).

“There’s magic in the air here with this incredible cast, as they all return home to the original sets of Hogwarts, where they began 20 years ago,” said executive producer Casey Patterson. “The excitement is palpable as they prepare to take their fans on a very special and personal journey, through the making of these incredible films.”

Viewers can check out 20th anniversary hub content on WizardingWorld.com. An exclusive first look at the special will debut during the premiere of “Harry Potter: Hogwarts Tournament of Houses” on Nov. 28 (8 p.m. ET/PT) on TBS and Cartoon Network. The bracket-style quiz competition, hosted by Helen Mirren, features fans competing to take home the Tournament of Houses championship trophy and cameos by Harry Potter film alumni Tom Felton, Simon Fisher-Becker, Shirley Henderson and Luke Youngblood, as well as superfans Pete Davidson and Jay Leno. The four-part competition event will also begin streaming on HBO Max on Jan. 1.

 

‘Sex and the City’ Relaunch ‘And Just Like That …’ to Debut Dec. 9 on HBO Max

The 10-episode Max original series “And Just Like That …” will debut with two episodes Dec. 9 on HBO Max.

The following eight episodes will premiere weekly on subsequent Thursdays.

The new chapter of the HBO series “Sex and the City,” from executive producer Michael Patrick King, follows Carrie (Sarah Jessica Parker), Miranda (Cynthia Nixon) and Charlotte (Kristin Davis) as they navigate the journey from the complicated reality of life and friendship in their 30s to the even more complicated reality of life and friendship in their 50s. 

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The series also includes previously announced cast members Sara Ramírez, Sarita Choudhury, Nicole Ari Parker, Karen Pittman, Chris Noth, Mario Cantone, David Eigenberg, Willie Garson and Evan Handler.
 
The HBO series “Sex and the City” was created by Darren Star and based on the book “Sex and the City” by Candace Bushnell.

 

Netflix Launches Free Plan in Vietnam

Netflix has launched a new free plan that will let anyone with an Android phone in Vietnam get the service free without ads. 

Vietnam is the only country in Asia where Netflix is offering the free plan, and the second one to experience the free plan, after Kenya, according to a blog post from Cathy Conk, director of product innovation.

“All you have to do is enter your email, confirm you are 18 or over, and create a password,” she wrote. “We won’t ask you for any payment information when you sign up for the free plan. Once you’re in, you can immediately start watching many of Netflix’s most popular series and films like ‘Squid Game,’ ‘The Witcher,’ ‘Money Heist,’ and ‘Kingdom,’ just to name a few.”

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The plan includes Netflix features such as recommendations, five profiles and “My List.” Parental controls are also included. In the coming months, the download feature will also be made available in the free plan, she wrote. 

To get the full catalog, more features, and the option to get Netflix on a TV or laptop, consumers must upgrade to a paid plan.

‘Dune,’ ‘You’ Again Top Weekly Whip Media Streaming Charts

Dune: Part One, streaming on HBO Max, led the Whip Media chart of top streaming movies for the third consecutive week, while Netflix’s “You” continued its reign atop the chart of top streaming originals among U.S. consumers the week ended Nov. 7.

Dune: Part One, Warner Bros. Pictures/Legendary Pictures’ adaptation of Frank Herbert’s 1965 science-fiction novel, debuted on HBO Max Oct. 21, a day ahead of its North American theatrical release. The film stars Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya. It’s the third consecutive week the film led the chart.

Season three of the psychological thriller series “You,” which started streaming Oct. 15, features the continuation of Joe Goldberg’s fraught relationship with Love, who is pregnant with his child in a new suburban home. “You” has led the chart for four consecutive weeks.

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TV Time, a Whip Media company, is a free TV and movie viewership tracking app with 18 million global users. The streaming originals chart rankings are determined by streaming original TV series with the greatest share of views in the given week, among a balanced panel of U.S. users of the TV Time app. The movie rankings are determined by theatrical or streaming movies with the greatest share of views in the given week, among a balanced panel of U.S. users of the TV Time app.

Coming in at No. 2 (up from No. 3) on the streaming movies chart was Netflix’s Army of Thieves, a prequel to Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead. In the film, small-town bank teller Dieter gets drawn into the adventure of a lifetime when a mysterious woman recruits him to join a crew of Interpol’s most wanted criminals, attempting to heist a sequence of legendary, impossible-to-crack safes across Europe.

Landing at No. 3 on the streaming movies chart was Netflix’s The Harder They Fall. The Western stars Idris Elba and Jonathan Majors.

Repeating at No. 2 on the streaming originals chart was Netflix’s “Locke and Key,” season two of which started streaming Oct. 22. In the series, after their father is murdered under mysterious circumstances, the three Locke siblings and their mother move into their ancestral home, Keyhouse, which they discover is full of magical keys that may be connected to their father’s death.

Taking the bronze on the streaming originals chart was Netflix’s “Big Mouth,” season five of which premiered Nov. 5. The adult animated show, featuring the voices of Nick Kroll and John Mulaney, follows teenage friends who find their lives upended by puberty. 

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Top Streaming Originals Among U.S. Consumers for the Week Ended Nov. 7:

  1. “You” — Netflix
  2. “Locke & Key” — Netflix
  3. “Big Mouth” — Netflix (Season Premiere)
  4. “SEAL Team” — Paramount+
  5. “The Morning Show” — Apple TV+
  6. “Squid Game” — Netflix
  7. “Doom Patrol” — HBO Max
  8. “Foundation” (2021) — Apple TV+
  9. “Ted Lasso” — Apple TV+
  10. “Love Life” (2020) — HBO Max

 

Top Streaming Movies Among U.S. Consumers for the Week Ended Nov. 7:

  1. Dune: Part One — HBO Max
  2. Army of Thieves — Netflix
  3. The Harder They Fall — Netflix
  4. Love Hard — Netflix
  5. Halloween Kills — Peacock
  6. Finch — Apple TV+
  7. Black Widow — Disney+
  8. Hypnotic — Netflix
  9. The Nightmare Before Christmas — Disney+
  10. Night Teeth — Netflix

Competition Series ‘Foodtastic’ to Debut on Disney+ Dec. 15

All episodes of the Disney+ original series “Foodtastic” will debut Dec. 15 on the streaming service.

Hosted by Emmy award-winning actress Keke Palmer, “Foodtastic” is a global competition series in which skilled artists create extravagant scene work and larger-than-life sculptures made entirely out of food. From vegetables and butter to fruit and cheese, everyday items are transformed into works of art. Each episode is rooted in iconic Disney IP and the food-based builds are an extension of that world.

Flour Shop founder Amirah Kassem and NYC’s City Cakes founder chef Benny Rivera serve as food art experts on the series.

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‘Dune,’ ‘You’ Again Top Weekly Whip Media Streaming Charts

Dune, streaming on HBO Max, again led the Whip Media chart of top streaming movies, while Netflix’s “You” repeated atop the chart of top streaming originals among U.S. consumers the week ended Oct. 31.

Dune, Warner Bros. Pictures/Legendary Pictures’ adaptation of Frank Herbert’s 1965 science-fiction novel, debuted on HBO Max Oct. 21, a day ahead of its North American theatrical release. The film stars Timothee Chalamet, Rebecca Ferguson and Zendaya.

Season three of the psychological thriller series “You,” which started streaming Oct. 15, features the continuation of Joe Goldberg’s fraught relationship with Love, who is pregnant with his child in a new suburban home.

Subscribe HERE to the FREE Media Play News Daily Newsletter!

TV Time, a Whip Media company, is a free TV and movie viewership tracking app with 18 million global users. The streaming originals chart rankings are determined by streaming original TV series with the greatest share of views in the given week, among a balanced panel of U.S. users of the TV Time app. The movie rankings are determined by theatrical or streaming movies with the greatest share of views in the given week, among a balanced panel of U.S. users of the TV Time app.

Repeating at No. 2 on the streaming movies chart was Universal Pictures’ Halloween Kills, the latest entrant in the long-running horror series, available for streaming to Peacock Premium SVOD subscribers as well as in theaters. The sequel to the 2018 reboot from Blumhouse has Jamie Lee Curtis again reprising her role as Laurie Strode intent on ending the murderous reign of Michael Myers.

Landing at No. 3 on the streaming movies chart was Netflix’s Army of Thieves, a prequel to Zack Snyder’s Army of the Dead. In the film, small-town bank teller Dieter gets drawn into the adventure of a lifetime when a mysterious woman recruits him to join a crew of Interpol’s most wanted criminals, attempting to heist a sequence of legendary, impossible-to-crack safes across Europe.

Taking the silver on the streaming originals chart was Netflix’s “Locke and Key,” season two of which started streaming Oct. 22. In the series, after their father is murdered under mysterious circumstances, the three Locke siblings and their mother move into their ancestral home, Keyhouse, which they discover is full of magical keys that may be connected to their father’s death.

Dropping from No. 2 to No. 3 on the streaming originals chart was “Squid Game,” Netflix’s South Korean hit series that follows a group of desperate and cash-strapped people competing in a blood-thirsty survival game. It started streaming Sept. 17.

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Top Streaming Originals Among U.S. Consumers for the Week Ended Oct. 31:

  1. “You” — Netflix
  2. “Locke & Key” — Netflix
  3. “Squid Game” — Netflix
  4. “The Morning Show” — Apple TV+
  5. “Ted Lasso” — Apple TV+
  6. “Only Murders in the Building” — Hulu
  7. “Doom Patrol” — HBO Max
  8. “SEAL Team” — Paramount+
  9. “Foundation” (2021) — Apple TV+
  10. “Titans” (2018) — HBO Max

 

Top Streaming Movies Among U.S. Consumers for the Week Ended Oct. 31:

  1. Dune — HBO Max
  2. Halloween Kills — Peacock
  3. Army of Thieves — Netflix
  4. Hypnotic (2021) — Netflix
  5. Paranormal Activity: Next of Kin — Paramount+
  6. Night Teeth — Netflix
  7. Hocus Pocus — Disney+
  8. The Many Saints of Newark — HBO Max
  9. Black Widow — Disney+
  10. The Village — Hulu

Holiday-Themed Programs Hitting PBS Kids Prime Video Channel in November

Holiday-themed programs will be curated in a special section of the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel in November.

The festive season kicks off with a Thanksgiving special from “Arthur” and Christmas movies from “Nature Cat” and “Wild Kratts.” Compilations featuring PBS Kids characters will also be available in the collection, including stories about winter fun, Hannukah traditions, and Christmas celebrations in Spanish.

The subscription rate for the PBS Kids Prime Video Channel is $4.99 per month with an Amazon Prime or Prime Video subscription.

Nature Cat: A Nature Carol is available Nov. 19. Viewers join Nature Cat and his pals for an hour-long Christmas movie. In this homage to A Christmas Carol, Nature Cat is bursting with what he thinks is “Christmas Spirit,” and wants to celebrate with lots of presents for himself, and by decorating the woods with bright lights and loud festive music for everyone. Daisy, Hal and Squeeks are upset, because Nature Cat’s desire to celebrate Christmas in a big way is causing problems with their friendship, as well as bothering all of the animals in the woods. It’s not until Nature Cat is visited by three Christmas Spirits that he finally sees the true meaning of Christmas.

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Also due Nov. 19 is Wild Kratts: A Creature Christmas. In this one-hour special, it’s Christmas time and the Wild Kratts are taking a break from creature adventuring to celebrate. They are just beginning to open their presents when the Wild Kratts Alarm sounds. The villains Zach Varmitech, Gaston Gourmand and Donita Donata are kidnapping all the baby animals to turn them into Christmas ornaments. Christmas will have to wait as the Wild Kratts spring into action to save their friends and get them home for Christmas.

Also on Nov. 19 comes the four-episode PBS Kids: Celebrate Hanukkah. When Albert Einstein has Peg and Cat over on Hanukkah, he shows them how to make a 2D piece of paper into a dreidel in “Flat Woman Problem/The Hanukkah Problem.” Then, Francine’s sharp-tongued grandma Bubba is the star of an “Arthur” episode all about family traditions in “Is That Kosher?/Never Never Never.” Finally, jump into a “Super Why!” story with the Super Readers to learn more about the holiday in “Judith’s Happy Chanukah!”

Finally on Nov. 19 comes the four-episode PBS Kids: Felices Fiestas!. Viewers join Daniel, Peg and her sidekick Cat, alien Jet Propulsion, and superhero WordGirl as they celebrate the holidays. Daniel and his friends go sledding, Jet searches to define the spirit of Christmas, and more.

Arthur: An Arthur Thanksgiving is available Nov. 26. In the five-episode collection, Arthur and his family are getting ready for Thanksgiving. But, when Pal disappears to go on his own adventure, Arthur puts his plans on hold to search for him. Meanwhile, D.W. starts to think that Aunt Minnie might be more of an Aunt “Meanie.” Can family, friends and the rest of Elwood City get Pal home and help D.W. and Aunt Minnie celebrate the best Thanksgiving yet?

Also due Nov. 26 is the five-episode PBS Kids: More Snowy Stories with characters from “Elinor Wonders Why,” “Hero Elementary,” “Molly of Denali,” “Pinkalicious & Peterrific” and “Xavier Riddle and the Secret Museum.” Pinkalicious and her brother Peter build a pink-mazing gingerbread house that attracts a holiday fairy in “Gingerbread House/Christmas Tree Trouble.” Elinor and her pals build a giant snow friend in “Leave it to Ari/Snow Friend.”

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Other titles coming to the holiday carousel are Arthur’s Perfect Christmas, Caillou: Let’s Go Sledding!, Let’s Go Luna: Christmas Around the World, PBS Kids: Happy Holidays, PBS Kids: Snowy Stories and PBS Kids: Winter Wonderland.