WarnerMedia on Tuesday unveiled its forthcoming direct-to-consumer service, HBO Max, which will launch with more than 10,000 hours of HBO shows, new original programming and library content from Warner Bros., DC Entertainment, The CW and more.

Most notably, all 236 episodes of Friends, the hit ‘90s sitcom that’s currently on Netflix, will stream exclusively on HBO Max. The news comes after Netflix paid about $80 million to reup its deal with Warner Bros. and maintain streaming rights through 2019.

“We’re sorry to see Friends go to Warner’s streaming service at the beginning of 2020 (in The US). Thanks for the memories, gang,” Netflix tweeted following the announcement.


The roster also includes The Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Pretty Little Liars and exclusive streaming rights to the Warner Bros.-produced dramas airing on The CW this fall: Batwoman and Katy Keene. Others— such as The Flintstones, A Star is Born and Looney Tunes—are briefly shown in WarnerMedia’s 45-second announcement compliation (above).

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While fan-favorite content is a large part of the new service, it will be anchored by new original programming, labeled “Max Originals,” which includes exclusive movie production deals with Reese Witherspoon and Arrow and Riverdale producer Greg Berlanti.

Witherspoon, who is also backing the launch of Apple TV+, will produce at least two films for the service through her production company Hello Sunshine. Berlanti will produce an initial four movies in the young-adult genre.

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“What I’ve always loved about creating shows that connect with a young audience is that these fans grow up with the programs and will remember them for the rest of their lives,” Berlanti said in a statement. “Now I get to do even more of that for HBO Max, where viewers will be able to discover shows on their own time, in their own way.”

Other original programming, such as Dune: The Sisterhood, Gremlins and the Ansel Elgort-led Tokyo Vice, will stream on the service as well.

“HBO Max will bring together the diverse riches of WarnerMedia to create programming and user experiences not seen before in a streaming platform,” Bob Greenblatt, chairman of WarnerMedia Entertainment and Direct-To-Consumer, said in a statement.

Casey Bloys, programming president of HBO, will continue to oversee content on the HBO service, while president of Warner Media Entertainment Networks Kevin Reilly will oversee all new Max Originals and library content as chief content officer.

Tony Goncalves, CEO of Otter Media, now oversees the development of HBO Max with former Hulu CEO Andy Forssell as general manager.

“Under the leadership of two of the strongest creative visionaries…and two of the most experienced digital experts…I have no doubt they and their dedicated teams will deliver the world’s best storytelling to audiences of all ages wherever and whenever they want it,” Greenblatt said.

HBO Max launches in spring 2020; however, consumers are waiting to see how its pricing will stack up next to other competitors, including newcomers Apple TV+ and Disney+.

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READ MORE: TechCrunch, Variety

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