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Starz Entertainment Announces Record Sampling Opportunities For "Boss" Series Debut

ENGLEWOOD, Colo., Oct. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ -- A full-episode sneak preview of the much-anticipated premiere of the STARZ Originals series, "Boss," will be available beginning October 14. An all-time Starz Entertainment high of 76 million households will have access to the sampling opportunities through select cable, satellite, and Telco affiliates in the United States.  "Boss" debuts October 21 on STARZ at 10PM ET/PT.

The first episode will be available free for sampling online at www.starz.com/boss and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/boss.starz, on-demand and online through affiliates (see complete list below) and at various times on DISH Network's 101 Channel prior to the series premiere. The episode will also be available for sampling on DIRECTV's Audience Network following its debut on October 21. "Boss," which was renewed for a second season on STARZ last month, is produced by Lions Gate Television for Starz Entertainment.

"Boss," created by Farhad Safinia ( Apocalypto), stars TV icon Kelsey Grammer, and has its first episode directed by acclaimed filmmaker Gus Van Sant in his TV directorial debut. Over its eight-episode first season, "Boss" centers on the Machiavellian machinations of Tom Kane, a fictional Chicago mayor (Grammer) with a dark secret.

Participating cable, satellite, and Telco affiliates offering the free on-demand sampling opportunities for the first episode include: Comcast, DIRECTV, DISH Network, Time Warner Cable, Verizon FiOS, Cox Communications, Charter Communications, Mediacom Communications Corporation, Insight Communications, Armstrong, Midcontinent Communications, Buckeye CableSystem, GCI, Blue Ridge Communications, Massillon Cable TV, and Antietam Cable Television.

In addition, the season premiere will be available online through Comcast's Xfinity TV ( www.xfinitytv.com), DISH Network ( www.DISHOnline.com) and Charter Communications ( www.charter.net) online platforms. Users on the go can also view the first episode on Comcast's Xfinity TV app ( www.xfinity.com/tvapp) for the iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.

"We are delighted that the interest from affiliates in sampling the series across all platforms has been so strong, netting an unprecedented level of 'Boss' sampling opportunities," said Ed Huguez, executive vice president, affiliate sales and marketing for Starz Entertainment. "As witnessed by the early season two renewal, we feel great about the prospects for this magnificent series."

"The marketing campaign for 'Boss' has benefitted greatly from having an iconic figure in Kelsey playing such a memorable role as Mayor Kane," said Nancy McGee, executive vice president of marketing for Starz Entertainment. "The positive reaction from affiliates mirrors that which we have heard from early critical reviews and the tremendous support received from our promotional partners."

Future episodes of "Boss" will be available to STARZ subscribers on STARZ ON DEMAND and STARZ ONLINE the day after the Friday premiere.

"Boss" is executive produced by Golden Globe® and Emmy Award® winner Kelsey Grammer, who also stars as Mayor Tom Kane, marking the actor's dramatic TV series debut. Joining Grammer in the main cast are Connie Nielsen ( Gladiator, The Devil's Advocate) as his wife Meredith, a formidable Chicago power in her own right; Hannah Ware ( Cop Out) as the Kanes' estranged daughter Emma; Jeff Hephner ("The O.C.," "Hellcats," "Easy Money") as ambitious young politician Ben Zajac; Kathleen Robertson ("Girls Club," "Beverly Hills 90210," Hollywoodland) as Mayor Kane's supremely organized chief of staff Kitty O'Neil; Martin Donovan ("Weeds," Unthinkable) as Kane's senior advisor, a savvy Yale graduate who helps the Mayor achieve his agenda; and Troy Garity ( Sunshine, Bandits) as enterprising journalist Sam Miller, who is zeroing in on Kane.

"Boss" explores the complexities of Mayor Tom Kane ( Kelsey Grammer), who sits like a spider at the center of Chicago's web of power – a web built on a covenant with the people. They want to be led, they want disputes settled, jobs dispensed, and loyalties rewarded. If he achieves this through deception and questionable ethics, so be it. As long as he gets the job done, they look the other way. But now, despite being the most effective mayor in recent history, a degenerative brain disorder is ripping everything away from him. He can't trust his memory, his closest allies, or even himself. Kane's wife Meredith ( Connie Nielsen) knows nothing; theirs is a marriage of convenience. Kitty O'Neil ( Kathleen Robertson), has her suspicions but stays silent, and Kane's political advisor Ezra Stone ( Martin Donovan) does what the Mayor requires, no questions asked.  Only Emma ( Hannah Ware), Kane's estranged daughter, has a chance of learning his secret. This is going to be the toughest term yet for the Boss.

Farhad Safinia is executive producer on the series, along with Grammer, Van Sant, Brian Sher, Stella Bulochnikov, Richard Levine and Lyn Greene.  Lions Gate Television is producing "Boss" in association with Grammer's Grammnet NH Productions, Roya Productions and Old Friends Productions.

Grammer, who earned a Tony Award® nomination in 2010 for his starring role in the Broadway production of "La Cage Aux Folles," is a multiple Emmy® and Golden Globe® Award winner for his portrayal of Frasier Crane in the long-running TV series "Cheers" and "Frasier." His dramatic feature film credits include X-Men: The Last Stand and 15 Minutes.

Van Sant's credits include Milk, Good Will Hunting (both of which earned him Oscar® nominations for Best Director), Finding Forrester and To Die For. He also played himself in an episode of the television series "Entourage."

About Starz Entertainment

Starz Entertainment, LLC, is a premium movie and original programming entertainment service provider operating in the United States. The company offers 17 premium channels including the flagship STARZ® and ENCORE® brands with approximately 19 million and 32.9 million subscribers respectively.  Starz Entertainment airs in total more than 1,000 movies and original series every month across its pay TV channels. Starz Entertainment is recognized as a pay TV leader in providing HD, On Demand, HD On Demand and online advanced services for its STARZ, ENCORE and MOVIEPLEX brands.  Starz Entertainment ( www.starz.com) is an operating unit of Starz, LLC, which is a controlled subsidiary of Liberty Media Corporation and is attributed to the Liberty Starz tracking stock group (NASDAQ: LSTZA).

For high-resolution images and other press materials please visit the Starz Press Room at www.starz.mediaroom.com.

The official "Boss" trailer, and behind the scenes videos are available at www.starz.com/boss. Viewers will also be able to follow "Boss" on Twitter: www.twitter.com/boss_starz and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/boss.starz.

Contact: Jenny TaylorStarz Entertainment(720) 852-6018 jenny.taylor@starz.com

SOURCE Starz Entertainment

Copyright 2011 PR Newswire. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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