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[12/18/08 - 01:31 PM]
HBO Drama Series Big Love Kicks Off Third Season JaN. 18
Plus: series creators Mark V. Olsen and Will Scheffer have created a trio of "Three Past Midnight" promotional pieces that will be featured on a variety of linear and non-linear platforms.

[via press release from HBO]

HBO Drama Series Big Love Kicks Off Third Season Jan. 18

December 18, 2008

Times are tough for everyone these days, including home-improvement store owner Bill Henrickson and his three wives. In the face of a flat do-it-yourself market and a crackdown on polygamists around the country, Bill wants to protect his growing family and his chain of Home Plus superstores by diversifying his business operations and building neighborhood goodwill. And as if his life wasn�t complicated enough already, he wants to take a fourth wife who can produce more children.

The drama series Big Love kicks off its ten-episode third season with the episode entitled "Block Party," debuting SUNDAY, JAN. 18 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT), exclusively on HBO, followed by other episodes on subsequent Sundays at the same time.

Big Love tells the story of Salt Lake City native Bill Henrickson, who balances the needs of his three wives � Barb, Nicki and Margene � their eight kids, three houses and his home improvement stores. Bill Paxton, Jeanne Tripplehorn, Chlo� Sevigny, Ginnifer Goodwin and Harry Dean Stanton star in the series, which is executive produced by Playtone�s Tom Hanks and Gary Goetzman, series creators Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer, and David Knoller.

Fresh from a bitter, albeit successful, battle to acquire a gaming-machine business, Bill Henrickson now faces a new array of personal and professional challenges. Over the course of season three of BIG LOVE, he will try to convince a Native American tribe to partner on a Mormon-friendly casino; woo a fourth-wife prospect through unorthodox group-dating rituals; face unexpected repercussions from the imprisonment of "prophet" Roman Grant and the rise of his treacherous son Alby; deal with escalating hostilities involving mother Lois, father Frank, brother Joey and sister-in-law Wanda; and navigate crises involving his children Sarah, Ben and Tancy.

Other returning series regulars on the third season of BIG LOVE include Shawn Doyle, Mireille Enos, Joel McKinnon Miller, Matt Ross, Amanda Seyfried, Douglas Smith, Melora Walters and Grace Zabriskie. Also appearing are Daveigh Chase, Bruce Dern, Branka Katic, Tina Majorino, Mary Kay Place and Jolean Wejbe.

Upcoming episodes:

Episode #25: "Block Party" Debut: SUNDAY, JAN. 18 (9:00-10:00 p.m. ET/PT) Other HBO playdates: Jan. 18 (10:30 p.m.), 20 (11:00 p.m.), 21 (10:00 p.m.) and 23 (1:20 a.m.) HBO2 playdates: Jan. 19 (10:00 p.m.), 20 (7:00 p.m.), 24 (noon, 11:00 p.m.) and 25 (8:00 p.m.)

Bill (Bill Paxton) tries to convince Jerry Flute (Robert Beltran), a native-American businessman, to partner with him in a Mormon-friendly casino outside Salt Lake City, and finds a surprisingly effective ally in Margene (Ginnifer Goodwin). With Roman (Harry Dean Stanton) in jail and incensed at Alby (Matt Ross) for betraying him, Nicki (Chlo� Sevigny) temps at the DA�s office to hunt down state�s evidence for Adaleen (Mary Kay Place). After learning she may have a cancer recurrence, Barb (Jeanne Tripplehorn) warms to the idea of Ana (Branka Katic) joining the family, though the waitress is resistant to the family�s overtures. Meanwhile, Frank�s (Bruce Dern) teenage son Frankie (Mark L. Young) ends up on Bill�s doorstep after his father throws him to the curb. Sarah (Amanda Seyfried) shatters Heather�s (Tina Majorino) dream of attending the same local college. Roughed up in a bathroom, Alby becomes suspicious of Bill and, later, Adaleen. An annual block party becomes the battleground for Bill to defend the family against neighborhood gossip, and for Nicki to defend her lifestyle as the daughter of Roman Grant. Written by Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer; directed by Dan Attias.

Episode #26: "Empire" Debut: SUNDAY, JAN. 25 (9:00-10:00 p.m.) Other HBO playdates: Jan. 25 (10:35 p.m.), 27 (11:00 p.m.), 28 (10:30 p.m.) and 30 (1:00 a.m.) HBO2 playdates: Jan. 26 (10:00 p.m.), 27 (7:00 p.m.) and 31 (9:00 a.m., 11:00 p.m.)

Bill and his family test out the group-dating waters with Ana, with mixed results. Bill presses ahead with his unlikely courtship of Jerry Flute, despite a sizable expense, a crisis in Don�s (Joel McKinnon Miller) family, and an apparent gaffe by Margene. Barb anxiously awaits test results from the hospital, while Nicki goes to a fertility clinic already knowing the result. Scott (Aaron Paul) encounters unexpected resistance from Sarah when he offers to join her in Arizona. Roman puts the squeeze on Bill in an attempt to track down Rhonda (Daveigh Chase), one of his would-be accusers. Frankie reveals a surprising side when he takes Sarah and her friends to a crash pad for wayward young polygamists. Frank visits Lois (Grace Zabriskie) with new sister wife Jodean (Mireille Enos), and ends up staying longer than expected. Teleplay by Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer; story by Dustin Lance Black; directed by Jim McKay.

Episode #27: "Prom Queen" Debut: SUNDAY, FEB. 1 (9:00-10:00 p.m.) Other HBO playdates: Feb. 1 (10:35 p.m.), 3 (11:00 p.m.), 4 (10:00 p.m.) and 6 (2:45 a.m.)

As Bill debates what to do with Rhonda, who may or may not testify at Roman�s impending trial, another potential witness, Kathy (Mireille Enos), goes underground with Joey (Shawn Doyle) and Wanda (Melora Walters). Frank finds himself in a bind and at Lois� mercy, and tries to talk his way out of the predicament, though she is not moved. A revelation from Ana tests Bill�s commitment, especially when he and Barb catch her in a compromising position. Margene gets disturbing personal news, but keeps her emotions in check. Barb�s sister Cindy (Judith Hoag) is back in town and heading up an anti-gaming committee that threatens the Henricksons� recent investments. Wanda spills a secret about Nicki�s past that even Bill doesn�t know, creating an instant rift and further fanning Bill�s ire towards Roman. Sarah decides to attend her senior prom with Heather, with Ben (Douglas Smith) and Frankie as their dates. Written by Eileen Myers; directed by David Petrarca.

In addition to hour-long episodes of Big Love, series creators Mark V. Olsen and Will Scheffer have created a trio of "Three Past Midnight" promotional pieces that will be featured on a variety of linear and non-linear platforms. Each of the three pieces � "Margene and Nicki," "Bill and Barb" and "Ben and Sarah" � runs two to three minutes, and shows how one pair reacts to news that a polygamist compound in Kansas has been raided, and state troopers have taken a majority of children into custody.

Kicking off its second season in June 2007, Big Love sparked a host of rave reviews, with the New York Times calling it "ingenious," while the Seattle Times & Seattle Post-Intelligencer praised the series as "original, rich, superbly acted." The Boston Herald hailed the show�s "strong performances," and TV Guide described it as "one of the summer�s big must-sees."

Big Love is produced by HBO Entertainment in association with Playtone and Anima Sola Productions; created by Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer; executive producers, Tom Hanks, Gary Goetzman, Mark V. Olsen & Will Scheffer, and David Knoller; co-executive producer, Bernadette Caulfield; consulting producer, Dan Attias; producer, Steve Turner; co-producers, Dustin Lance Black, Patricia Breen and Peter Friedlander; executive story editor, Eileen Myers; staff writers, Melanie Marnich and Roberto Aguirre-Sacasa; casting, Junie Lowry Johnson, C.S.A. and Libby Goldstein.





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· BIG LOVE (HBO)





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