HBO announces 'Boardwalk Empire' will premiere Sept. 19
HBO followed its big sweep of Emmy nominations Thursday with some news Friday about its next major project expected to be a big awards contender. The network announced that “Boardwalk Empire,” a period drama set in tumultuous, Prohibition-era Atlantic City, N.J., will premiere Sept. 19. That means the series will be launching just as the broadcast networks are premiering all their new fall shows -- a sign HBO must feel particularly confident in its prospects.
The series stars Steve Buscemi as the corrupt quasi-fictional politician Nucky Thompson, who turns the ban on alcohol to his advantage. Martin Scorsese serves as executive producer and directed the pilot. The show was created by Terence Winter, a "Sopranos" writer, who recruited much of the crew from that program to join him.
Last November, The Times got a look at the set for the series built on a riverside parking lot in an industrial area in Brooklyn, N.Y., which includes a 300-foot-long replica of the Atlantic City boardwalk, circa 1920. From the story:
The elaborate set, which took three months to build, matches the scope of the project: sherbet-hued shops peddling palm readings, postcards and saltwater taffy line a 45-foot-wide boardwalk ringed with trucked-in sand. There's even a "Baby Incubator" building, modeled after a real baby hospital where tourists on the boardwalk gawked at underweight infants.
Dozens of extras wearing fedoras and fur-collared coats strolled down the pine boards on a recent sunny afternoon, weaving past wicker chairs pushed by young men in knickers and argyle socks. On the other side of the makeshift beach rose a massive blue screen, on which the show's editors will digitally insert footage of the Atlantic Ocean. (They'll also have to scrub out the top of the Empire State Building, whose spire juts up incongruously in the distance.)
Read the full story here.
-- Matea Gold
Photo credit: HBO