Richie Finestra, the founder and president of American Century Records, is trying to save his company and soul without destroying everyone in his path. With his passion for music and discovering talent gone by the wayside, and American Century on the precipice of being sold, he has a life-altering event that reignites his love of music, but severely damages his personal life.
From Academy Award-winner and Emmy winner Martin Scorsese (“The Departed,” HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire”), Golden Globe winner and Emmy® nominee Mick Jagger (HBO’s “Mr. Dynamite: The Rise of James Brown”) and Academy Award® nominee and multiple Emmy® winner Terence Winter (“The Wolf of Wall Street”; HBO’s “The Sopranos” and “Boardwalk Empire”), VINYL is a ride through the sex- and drug-addled music business of 1970s New York at the dawn of punk, disco and hip-hop.
The HBO drama series kicks off its ten-episode season SUNDAY, FEB. 14th (9:00-11:00 p.m. ET/PT) with a pilot directed by Scorsese, from a story by Rich Cohen & Mick Jagger & Martin Scorsese and Terence Winter, and teleplay by Terence Winter and George Mastras, followed by hour-long episodes debuting subsequent Sundays at the same time.
VINYL stars two-time Emmy® winner Bobby Cannavale (HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire”), as Richie Finestra, SAG Award nominee Olivia Wilde (HBO’s “Doll and Em”) and multiple Emmy® winner Ray Romano (“Everybody Loves Raymond”). Scorsese, Jagger and Winter executive produce along with Rick Yorn, Victoria Pearman, Emma Tillinger Koskoff, John Melfi, Allen Coulter and George Mastras. Winter serves as showrunner.
Richie Finestra’s wife, Devon (Olivia Wilde), a former actress and model who was part of Andy Warhol’s Factory scene in 1960s New York City, is now a suburban mother of two. Richie’s personal and professional crises put additional stress on their relationship, inspiring a desire to return to her Bohemian roots.
Meanwhile, as head of promotions and a partner at American Century, Zak Yankovich’s (Ray Romano) experience in the industry and hundred-dollar handshakes make him an invaluable part of the company, though he works in Richie’s shadow. Their professional relationship is strained by disagreements over how to guide the company through the music landscape of 1973.
Other series regulars include: Ato Essandoh as Lester Grimes, Richie’s first client in the early 1960s; Max Casella as Julius “Julie” Silver, head of A&R of American Century, who struggles to stay hip and relevant in the young man’s game of rock ‘n’ roll; P.J. Byrne as Scott Levitt, company attorney and junior partner at American Century, whose legal maneuvering and abrasive personality continually test Richie’s patience; J.C. MacKenzie as Skip Fontaine, head of sales and partner at American Century, whose savvy and sometimes questionable business practices inflate American Century’s profits; Birgitte Hjort Sørensen as Ingrid, a member of Andy Warhol’s Factory scene in the 1960s, and a former friend of Devon and Richie; Juno Temple as Jamie Vine, an ambitious A&R assistant at American Century, who uses her keen abilities to blend into the various subcultures of the New York music scene; Jack Quaid as Clark Morelle, a junior A&R executive with misguided ambition; James Jagger as Kip Stevens, founder and lead singer of The Nasty Bits, a raw New York City rock band; and Paul Ben-Victor as Maury Gold, Richie’s mentor and owner of Rondelay Records.
Episode #1: “Pilot”
Debut: SUNDAY, FEB. 14 (9:00-11:00 p.m. ET/PT)
New York City, 1973. Together with his partners, Richie Finestra (Bobby Cannavale), president of American Century Records, is on the verge of selling his struggling company to German Polygram, in a deal that includes an impending distribution agreement with Led Zeppelin. But after a disastrous meeting, it’s clear that the sale is in jeopardy.
Heading home to Greenwich, Conn., Richie takes a detour to an unplanned reunion with Lester Grimes (Ato Essandoh), a musical artist with whom he has a complicated history. With thoughts of Lester weighing on him, Richie heads to the office, where, in addition to the Led Zeppelin situation, he learns of another problem: Bombastic Frank “Buck” Rogers (Andrew Dice Clay), owner of a chain of radio stations, is about to boycott American Century due to a perceived slight by one of the label’s artists.
In crisis mode, Richie gives his A&R department the mandate to find new acts, prompting office assistant Jamie Vine (Juno Temple) to bring in The Nasty Bits, a proto-punk band unlike anything anyone has ever heard.
Meanwhile, Richie enlists thuggish independent promotion man Joe Corso (Bo Dietl) to help with the Buck Rogers situation. After a three-day coke binge, Corso summons the sober Richie to Rogers’ home, where things go horribly awry.
Despite American Century’s troubles, Richie learns that Polygram has agreed to buy the company after all. That night, with both Lester and the Buck Rogers debacle on his mind, he goes violently off the wagon, trashing the den of his Connecticut home and severely jeopardizing his relationship with his wife, Devon (Olivia Wilde), and their two children.
Richie ultimately finds himself coked out and on his own, drawn by a crowd of young people to the Mercer Arts Center in Manhattan, where he sees The New York Dolls perform, a night that sets him on a completely new course.
Story by Rich Cohen & Mick Jagger & Martin Scorsese and Terence Winter; teleplay by Terence Winter and George Mastras; directed by Martin Scorsese.
VINYL will also be available on HBO NOW and HBO GO.
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