Vice is expanding its relationship with HBO to include a daily half-hour TV newscast and a Vice channel on the network's upcoming direct-to-consumer streaming video service, HBO Now.
The service, which will cost $14.99 per month, is HBO's attempt to reach younger audiences who are not cable subscribers. Vice CEO Shane Smith suggested in a statement that he'd realized ambitious journalism was more than the company's original scrappy, DIY ethos could support on its own:
I think the first thing, perhaps the hardest thing, I learned about journalism over the past 20 years is that maintaining any type of independence, any type of freedom, is difficult as you scale up. This deal, simply put, allows Vice the freedom to go after any story, anywhere we find it – and to do so with complete independence. This deal is a tremendous gift and a tremendous opportunity, and we at Vice realize this.
Vice's current weekly TV series on HBO will be expanded to 35 episodes a year from 14 and Vice will produce 32 TV specials for the network through 2018.