If there is one name that makes HBO see dollar signs and Emmy awards, it’s Tom Hanks. All right, Hanks makes just about everyone see dollar signs and awards, but this time around it’s not Hanks in front of the cameras but behind them, where he spends plenty of time these days. His production company Playtone, with longtime business partner Gary Goetzman, has been behind several hits for the premium network, and now they are working together again on a new series.

Hanks and Goetzman are the team behind HBO’s award winning miniseries Band of Brothers and John Adams as well as The Pacific. They are also responsible for the hit series Big Love. It seems they still have big love for HBO; The Hollywood Reporter broke the news on their latest collaboration with the network entitled Players, which centers on the lives of college athletes. This comes not long after word that the team will also be working on an adaptation of American Gods based on the Neil Gaiman novel.

The development deal on the project has Hanks and Goeztman executive producing while James Evans and Daryl Scoot with produce for HBO. Players will be a half hour comedy, a departure from the work Hanks and company have done for the network in the past. Still, no one would question Hanks place in the comedy world, and it might just be a refreshing change for HBO and for Playtone.

Plenty of Hanks’ fans will tune it to see just about anything he attaches his name to, so HBO has to be pleased with the ongoing partnership with his production company. Just how amusing college athletes are to anyone but each other remains to be seen.

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