Martin Scorcese’s new HBO pilot Vinyl set for Aussie premiere

22 January, 2016 by Staff Writer



New HBO series Vinyl will have its Australian premiere on February 15.

The series, which will premiere on Foxtel's Showcase, explores the drug- and sex- fuelled music business of the 1970s.

It is played out through the story of a NYC record executive trying to revive his label and keep his personal life from spiralling out of control.

Vinyl is executive produced by Terence Winter, Marin Scorsese, Mick Jagger, Rick Yorn, Victoria Pearman, Emma Tillinger Koskoff, John Melfi and Allen Coulter, with Winter (creator/EP of Boardwalk Empire) serving as showrunner.

The two-hour first episode is written by Winter and directed by Scorsese, who also directed the Boardwalk Empire pilot.

It take a ride through the US music-business landscape at the dawn of punk, disco, and hip-hop. 

The story is seen through the eyes of  Richie Finestra (Bobby Cannavale), a major-label exec with a dark past and darker present. 

With his company, American Century Records, facing a number of client crises, and with his A&R team having trouble landing important new acts, Richie, sober after years of drug and alcohol abuse, looks to sell his label to a West German conglomerate. 

But Richie’s plans become complicated when he becomes embroiled in the death of a sleazy Long Island radio-company owner.

Facing prison time, not to mention the loss of his disenchanted wife Devon (Olivia Wilde) and their two kids, Richie ends up reverting to his old vices, but has an epiphany during a concert at a Greenwich Village theater where the roof caves in on him – literally.

Vinyl brings the gritty, rough- and-tumble world of 1970s rock music – in which rock supergroups like the Stones and Led Zeppelin were being challenged by a wave of punk, disco and hip-hop acts – to life through the fictional story of a record exec whose life is rapidly spinning out of control.

Shot in New York, it captures a heady time in American culture and music, when vinyl records had yet to be replaced by CDs, and nobody even knew what the Internet was. 

While the story is fictional, references to and portrayals of actual recording artists, producers and celebrities abound. 

Jagger, whose son James portrays a punk-band singer, serves as executive music producer as well as EP, with music from the era infusing the drama.

Cast regulars include Olivia Wilde (Tron, Rush), Ray Romano (Everybody Loves Raymond), Juno Temple (Maleficent), Max Casella (The Sopranos), Paul Ben-Victor (The Wire), Jack Quaid (The Hunger Games), P.J. Byrne (The Wolf of Wall Street), James Jagger (Stealing Summers), Ato Essandoh (Django Unchained), Birgitte Hjort Sorensen (Game of Thrones) and J.C. MacKenzie (The Aviator). Among the S1 guests are John Cameron Mitchell (Hedwig and the Angry Inch) and Andrew "Dice" Clay (Blue Jasmine).

Vinyl premieres February 15 at 3.30pm Express and 7.30pm encore on showcase only on Foxtel.