Considering the attention a new project from Aaron Sorkin generates – like his involvement in the other Steve Jobs biopic – it’s understandable that HBO would choose to push its newest series, The Newsroom, by slathering Sorkin’s name and his accolades wherever it might attract the most attention. Since the series is set to premiere on June 24th, the network’s final wave of marketing has begun with the release of two new trailers and a poster that market Sorkin’s past work as much as they do the show’s plot.
For those not already familiar, The Newsroom centers on Will McAvoy(Jeff Daniels), a cable news anchor who has made it his mission to create a television news program that actually covers the news without bending to some sort of political bias, or yielding to the commercial interests of corporate overlords. Joining McAvoy on his quest for journalistic integrity is his producer, Mackenzie MacHale (Emily Mortimer), and the young, but inexperienced staff consisting mainly of Maggie Jordan (Alison Pill), Jim Harper (John Gallagher Jr.) and Neal (Dev Patel). Meanwhile, Sam Waterston will play McAvoy’s boss, Charlie Skinner, and Jane Fonda will appear as said corporate overlord.
The first trailer for the series premiered in early April and teased fans by unleashing the full Sorkin in a set up that has Daniels’ McAvoy caught in a PR disaster following a public outburst in which he chastised a “sorority girl” for assuming America was the greatest country in the world. McAvoy’s string of readily available, yet disheartening facts and figures is apparently news to everyone, and makes him a bit of a controversial figure in the realm of cable news.
The tone set by the two new trailers suggests The Newsroom will focus on the idea that news and entertainment have somehow merged, diluting the essence of both. Now, Will McAvoy and his team are crusading to remove the fluff pieces and human-interest stories from the news, in favor of the cold hard facts. The recently-released poster seems to suggest the same thing with its relatively sparse focus on a contemplative Jeff Daniels:
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For all of its frank discussion about the state of America, The Newsroom is like most other Aaron Sorkin television endeavors in that it also features an impressive cast. Since they can’t all be delivering monologues intended to suddenly shock viewers into social awareness, there will be plenty of attention given to the professional and not-so-professional relationships that frequently pop up amongst co-workers who exist solely for our entertainment.
While Sorkin managed to keep The West Wing around for several seasons, his two Newsroom-like endeavors, Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip and Sports Night didn’t quite achieve the same level of longevity. Whether that’s the fault of the content being better suited for a cable network or not, remains to be seen, but after taking a good look at the trailers released so far, HBO seems to be the perfect home for this kind of material.
View the second trailer below:
The Newsroom premieres Sunday, June 24 @10pm on HBO.