The bad boys of the news business and the cool kids on cable have teamed up to create the hippest nightly newscast on television. HBO and Vice announced Thursday that the two have signed a deal that will significantly expand Vice's news operations on the network, including the launch of a daily newscast, 38 episodes a year of Vice’s weekly series on HBO (up from 14 last season), and an additional 32 specials that will delve into single topics in greater depth. The deal runs through 2018.
"This deal is a tremendous gift and a tremendous opportunity," Vice co-founder Shane Smith said in a statement. "This deal, simply put, allows VICE the freedom to go after any story, anywhere we find it — and to do so with complete independence."
The half-hour show, which will air on HBO five days a week, 48 weeks a year, will include dispatches from reporters on the ground in locations around the world. Though HBO has carried news-magazine-style programming for years, today’s announcement marks a major shift -- it is the first time HBO has carried any show that airs five days a week. Vice’s news site, Vice News, will continue to operate independently.
Though it's preceded by its reputation as a purveyor of risque lifestyle content, Vice has been busy building its journalism operations -- it operates 30 bureaus around the world -- and racking up journalism awards in the process. Back in August, Vice’s weekly HBO series won a Primetime Emmy in the category of Outstanding Informational Series or Special. Co-founder Shane Smith received a Knight Innovation Award back in December. It has also won Webby and Lovie awards for its video content.
"Shane and the VICE team have produced some of the most groundbreaking and dynamic journalism anywhere," HBO's CEO Richard Plepler and Michael Lombardo, president of HBO programming, said in a joint statement.
Vice's nightly show will begin airing in the fourth quarter of 2015.