'True Blood' creator Alan Ball talks new Cinemax series 'Banshee'
Best known for creating the popular dramas Six Feet Under and True Blood, Alan Ball will be premiering his newest series – a pulp thriller entitled Banshee – this Friday, January 11 on Cinemax.
However, it was originally developed at HBO. When the premium cable network declined to pick up the show, Ball took it to HBO's sluttier sister Cinemax, which snapped up Banshee as part of a new initiative to develop its own prestige-minded original programming. Despite Cinemax's reputation as a late-night destination for soft-porn thrills, Ball appreciated the effort to revamp and re-brand the network.
"I never felt like 'Skinemax, that's a step down,'" Ball told The Hollywood Reporter. "If [the executives] are looking to redefine it, that's great. When we were at HBO, we were dialing back on the pulp nature. At Cinemax we went to our original pitch again: high-octane entertainment, violent and clever, yet complex. It also allows us to treat the sexuality in the show in a very frank and adult manner. We don't have to hold back."
Pitched as Walking Tall meets A History of Violence, the new series revolves around Lucas Hood (Antony Starr), an ex-convict and master thief who assumes the identity of the small-town sheriff of Banshee, Pennsylvania, after he is murdered. Lucas continues his criminal activities, even as he's being hunted by the shadowy gangsters he betrayed years earlier. Banshee was created by authors Jonathan Tropper and David Schickler, with Ball serving as an executive producer.