Game Change Draws Record Audience for HBO
HBO's Game Change, a film based on the book with the same title about the 2008 presidential campaign, premiered before a record audience over the weekend.
According to to Entertainment Weekly, 2.1 million viewers tuned in for the Saturday television premiere -- the most for an HBO movie in eight years. The film aired on HBO four times throughout the weekend, and a total of 3.6 million viewers watched.
The last HBO movie to attract an audience as large was Something the Lord Made, staring Alan Rickman and Mos Def. It drew 2.6 million viewers. in 2004 The Game Change team's previous political HBO film Recount attracted 1 million viewers.
Unlike Recount, the Game Change cast and crew made promoted the film extensively. For weeks, actress Julianne Moore -- who portrayed Sarah Palin -- and Woody Harrelson -- who was Steve Schmidt, one of Sen. John McCain's, R-Ariz., top advisers -- did many interviews. Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, the authors of the book the movie was based upon, also promoted the film with appearances on cable news shows shows like MSNBC's Morning Joe
The controversy surrounding the portrayal of Palin built even more buzz for the film, which premiered in Washington last Thursday.