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Bill Maher, VICE Partner for HBO News Magazine

It makes perfect sense for HBO to expand the Bill Maher current events coverage playing field, and today, the network has indicated it will be doing so in a most intriguing manner.

Real Time host Maher will executive produce a weekly news magazine hosted by VICE founder Shane Smith. Smith will also be one of the other executive producers along with VICE chief creative officer Eddy Moretti. CNN’s Fareed Zakaria meanwhile will be on board as show consultant.

From today’s announcement:

VICE has emerged as a premier new media brand through a savvy combination of irreverence, smarts and fearlessness,” said Michael Lombardo, president HBO programming. “We are excited to offer a forum for their groundbreaking style of news coverage and look forward to a show that’s like nothing else on TV.”

Intriguingly, among the example segment topics listed in today’s release is North Korea’s labor camps. The international community is finally coalescing around this ghastly subject matter, and a piece on the upcoming HBO program (titled, simply, VICE) would be a welcome addition to that chorus.

On a side note, it looks like Variety‘s Jon Weisman was one of the first to pick up this news today, followed an hour later by the other three trades.

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