HBO sets premiere date for ‘Treme’

HBO has set April 11 as the premiere date for new David Simon series “Treme,” about how the citizens of New Orleans rebuild their lives following the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.


Ten-episode skein is David Simon’s most recent collaboration with net following “The Corner,” “The Wire” and Iraq War miniseries “Generation Kill.” “Wire” thesps Wendell Pierce and Clark Peters, as well as Khandi Alexander of “The Corner,” are part of a large ensemble.


“This is a city essential in the American psyche. It’s coming back on its own terms as best as it can,” said Simon.


Simon, Nina K. Noble, Eric Overmyer and former HBO programming topper Carolyn Strauss are exec producers.


Staying with a Big Easy theme, cabler is once again joining forces with Spike Lee. Helmer will follow-up his Katrina doc “When the Levees Broke: A Requiem in Four Acts” with an untitled film that he will direct that revisits the same people and see how their lives have progressed.


In “When the Levees Broke,” aired in August 2006, Lee conversed with the people of New Orleans who were most affected by the storm. August will mark the fifth anniversary of Katrina.


“ ‘When the Levees Broke’ was a landmark in documentary filmmaking,” said HBO doc topper and exec producer Sheila Nevins.  “It’s an exciting notion to anticipate Spike going back for this reprise.”    


Pic, which will air this summer, begins shooting Friday. Lee and Sam Pollard produce and HBO docu topper Sheila Nevins is exec producer.


Also at the net’s portion of the Television Critics Assn. tour in Pasadena, exec producer Steven Spielberg discussed 10-episode miniseries “The Pacific” that begins March.


Spielberg said from a filmmaking perspective, $250 million “The Pacific” is different from “Band of Brothers” in that this portion of the war “had more vivid colors and was a blue sky war” while the European theater was much more visually grim.


And on the difference between the two HBO miniseries that depict different theaters of World War II, exec producer Tom Hanks added, “The war in the Pacific set the tone for all wars that followed. It was a war of racism, terror and absolute horrors. We took human beings and put them through hell.”


In other announcements made, telepic “You Don’t Know Jack” – starring Al Pacino as Dr. Jack Kevorkian (Oscar winner was also in net’s “Angels in America”) – will air April 24. Susan Sarandon and John Goodman co-star.


“It’s the portrait of a zealot you don’t see often and is very informative,” Pacino said, who added he never met the physician known as “Dr. Death.” “Some characters you back away from and others you get to know.”


Pay cabler’s sports division is starting production on a doc on the rough-and-tumble Philadelphia Flyers hockey team of the 1970s. “

Broad Street

Bullies,” exec produced by HBO Sports topper Ross Greenburg and Rick Bernstein and produced by George Roy, will in May during the NHL’s Stanley Cup Playoffs.


Also, “Magic & Bird: A Courtship of Rivals,” which chronicles the great on-the-court battles between Magic Johnson and Larry Bird, will air March 6.


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