HBO chief Richard Plepler was in possession of the best cocktail party gossip of all on Sunday night at the cabler’s post-Golden Globes bash. But he wasn’t sharing — much.
As Plepler held court in the main dining room, staying away from the light rain that fell in the outside area (the Hilton pool was covered for the occasion), he let it be known that he has seen rough cuts of all six episodes of the final season of “Game of Thrones.”
“It’s a spectacle. The guys have done six movies. The reaction I had while watching them was, ‘I’m watching a movie,’“ Plepler told Variety. Of showrunners David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, Plepler enthused: “They knew the bar was high. They’ve exceeded the bar. I’ve watched them twice without any CGI and I’m in awe. Everybody’s in for an extraordinary treat of storytelling and of magical, magical production.”
HBO unveiled the first footage of the season on Sunday. Although the final season is shorter than previous ones, the new episodes are rumored to be about 90 minutes long each — the length of feature films.
HBO didn’t have its biggest night at the Globes — the company’s only win came for Patricia Clarkson for “Sharp Objects” — but the party was packed as usual. Clarkson finally got her bite (she told reporters backstage that she hadn’t had “a bite or a breath” in days) as she celebrated with showrunner Marti Noxon, star Amy Adams, and others from the series.
Kieran Culkin of HBO’s “Succession” made the rounds, collecting compliments for the first-year drama about a venal family of media moguls. Mahershala Ali, who stars in the new season of “True Detective,” made a big entrance with his Globe win for “Green Book.”
Tiffany Haddish and Regina King, a winner for “If Beale Street Could Talk,” shared a few hugs and squeals, after King finished a huddle with Plepler that looked very much like the two were talking about some future business.
Candice Bergen, Laura Dern, Ava DuVernay, Jason Blum, Pete Davidson, Lakeith Stanfield, and Patricia Arquette (a winner for Showtime’s “Escape at Dannemora”) were also among the revelers.
John Stankey, the new boss of HBO parent company WarnerMedia, was also on hand to survey the after-party scene at his first Golden Globes. He praised the performance of HBO’s management team during the past few months as the erstwhile Time Warner has been absorbed into the AT&T universe.
After months of “getting to know each other,” the marching orders for 2019 are very clear. “It’s now about execution,” Stankey said.
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