TV giant HBO Max is laying off around 70 people as part of a larger wave of cost-cutting by parent company Warner Bros Discovery as it battles huge debts.

The unscripted and live-action family programming divisions at HBO Max were severely hit on Monday, August 15.

HBO Max is the company’s flagship direct-to-consumer streaming service, launched in 2020.

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The casting unit of the streaming platform will be disbanded, and the team in charge of acquiring old content for the service will be drastically reduced.

The teams in charge of reality shows and documentaries, as well as those in charge of family entertainment, will also be affected.

The layoffs are part of a larger restructuring of the entertainment conglomerate.

New management led by CEO David Zaslav took control of the media giant last spring.

To tackle a huge debt, he stopped CNN+ just days after starting.

Weeks later, the streaming service launched.

He also stopped movies and television series that had been approved by previous administrations.

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Zaslav’s team stunned the creative industry earlier this month when they abruptly canceled the nearly finished superhero movie “Batgirl,” which was created exclusively for HBO Max.

The firm said earlier this month a new unified subscription platform will be available in the US beginning next summer.

$53 billion debt

More layoffs are likely as the corporation battles to reduce a $53 billion debt and to meet a pledge to its investors to reduce costs by $3 billion.

Advertising revenue is also declining, but the majority of the HBO Max programming executive team will continue.

Warner Bros. Discovery has previously stated that it plans to reduce original content on its cable networks TBS and TNT.

Source: The Wall Street Journal

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