Apple's Hollywood ambitions


'Apple's Hollywood ambitions' Articles

Report Claims Apple's Original Programming Efforts Will Avoid Mature Content

Apple is unlikely to produce original content that contains gratuitous sex, violence, profanity, or risqué storylines, according to a report published over the weekend by the Wall Street Journal. The article cites several sources familiar with Apple's original programming plans who say Apple wants to avoid putting its name to anything that could risk tainting its wider brand image. It also relates CEO Tim Cook's alleged reaction to watching Apple's first scripted drama, "Vital Signs," a semi-autobiographical tale of hip hop artist Dr Dre. According to the paper's sources, Cook previewed the show and was "troubled" by scenes depicting drawn guns, sex and drug use, and reportedly told Apple Music executive Jimmy Iovine that Apple couldn't show it. Across Hollywood and inside Apple, the show has become emblematic of the challenges faced by the technology giant as it pushes into entertainment. Apple earmarked $1 billion for Hollywood programming last year. But in the tone CEO Mr. Cook has set for it, whatever Apple produces mustn't taint a pristine brand image that has helped the company collect 80% of the profits in the global smartphone market. Apple's entertainment team must walk a line few in Hollywood would consider. Since Mr. Cook spiked "Vital Signs," Apple has made clear, say producers and agents, that it wants high-quality shows with stars and broad appeal, but it doesn't want gratuitous sex, profanity or violence.Apple's approach is in direct contrast to that of other streaming platforms, which have found great success in producing edgy content like

Apple Inks Deal for 'Defending Jacob' Series Starring Chris Evans

Apple has given a straight-to-series order for drama series "Defending Jacob," which will star Chris Evans, known for his roles in "Captain America" and "The Avengers," reports Deadline. "Defending Jacob" is a thriller based on William Landay's bestselling novel of the same title. The book covers the murder of a 14-year-old boy and his friend Jacob, who may have committed the crime. According to Deadline, the tv adaptation is described as a "gripping, character-driven thriller." The series was created and written by Mark Bomback, known for the "Planet of the Apes" trilogy. Morten Tyldum, known for "The Imitation Game," "Counterpart," and "Jack Ryan," is set to direct. "Defending Jacob" is just one of more than a dozen television shows Apple has in the works. The first of the TV shows could debut as soon as March 2019, and the content may be distributed through an as-of-yet unannounced streaming

Apple Acquires Rights to Two Films: Documentary 'The Elephant Queen' and Animated Cartoon 'Wolfwalkers'

Apple has acquired the global rights to "The Elephant Queen," a feature-length documentary about an elephant matriarch who leads her herd in search of a new watering hole to call home, according to Deadline. Athena is a mother who will do everything in her power to protect her herd when they are forced to leave their waterhole. This epic journey, narrated by Chiwetel Ejiofor, takes audiences across the African savannah, and into the heart of an elephant family. A tale of love, loss and coming home."The Elephant Queen" was screened Saturday at the Toronto International Film Festival, where top executives from Apple's Worldwide Video Programming division are believed to be scouting out films. The documentary is directed by award-winning wildlife filmmakers Victoria Stone and Mark Deeble. Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, two former Sony Pictures Television executives who lead Worldwide Video at Apple, reportedly led negotiations to pick up the documentary from Endeavor Content and Mister Smith Entertainment. In addition, prior to TIFF, Apple obtained rights to animated film "Wolfwalkers" from Cartoon Saloon and Melusine Productions, according to Deadline. The film, directed by two-time Oscar nominee Tomm Moore and Ross Stewart, centers on a young apprentice hunter named Robyn in a world of superstition.In a time of superstition and magic, when wolves are seen as demonic and nature an evil to be tamed, a young apprentice hunter, Robyn, comes to Ireland with her father to wipe out the last pack. But when Robyn saves a wild native girl, Mebh, their friendship leads

Apple Video Execs to Scope Out Movies at the Toronto International Film Festival

Apple executives in charge of the company's video efforts will be attending the Toronto International Film Festival this week to scope out potential movie acquisitions, reports Variety. The site says that at least one of the top programming executives, which includes Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg, will be at the festival to look for new content that could fill out an upcoming entertainment service. The Toronto International Film Festival is set to kick off on Thursday, September 6, and it will run through Sunday, September 16. This will mark the first time that Apple executives have attended the film festival, and the company will be competing with at least one other TV giant -- Amazon. Amazon executives are also going to be attending the festival to look for new movies to pick up. 342 films are set to be shown off at the Toronto International Film Festival, with a list of content available on the website for the festival. While Apple has more than a dozen original television shows that are in the works, it has thus far established few deals for movies. In fact, we only know about one potential movie deal with Cartoon Saloon, a company that develops animated movies like "The Secret of Kells," "The Song of the Sea," and "The Breadwinner." Rumors have suggested that Apple is planning to launch some kind of streaming television service in the future where all of the television shows are in the works will be available, and if Apple is aiming to compete with Netflix and Amazon, exclusive movie offerings will help to fill out its content catalogue.

Jane Krakowski to Star Alongside Hailee Steinfeld in Apple's Upcoming Emily Dickinson TV Show

Jane Krakowski, known for her roles in "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" and "30 Rock," has joined the cast of Apple's upcoming "Dickinson" series, reports Variety. "Dickinson," which Apple ordered back in May, is a half-hour show about the life of poet Emily Dickinson, who will be played by Hailee Steinfeld. Also a musician, Steinfeld is known for her roles in "True Grit," "Pitch Perfect 2," "Pitch Perfect 3," "Ender's Game," and coming of age film "Edge of Seventeen." Krakowski is joining "Dickinson" to play Mrs. Dickinson, Emily's mother. In addition to "Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt" and "30 Rock," Krakowski has also worked on "Ally McBeal, "Alfie," "Ice Age," and "National Lampoon's Vacation." "Dickinson" has been described as a comedic look into Emily Dickinson's world that explores the constraints of society, gender, and family from the perspective of a budding writer who doesn't fit into her own time. For those unfamiliar with Emily Dickinson, she was a prolific American poet known for short lines, slant rhymes, and irregular use of punctuation. Much of her work focused on death and immortality, and she was known for living a reclusive life. The show is being written and executive produced by Alena Smith, who was previously a writer on "The Affair" and "The Newsroom." David Gordon Green, known for "Stronger," Red Oaks," "Vice Principals," and "Pineapple Express" will direct. "Dickinson" is just one of more than a dozen television shows Apple has in the works. Several of the shows are now in the casting stages, including an untitled space drama from

Apple Gives Straight to Series Order to Drama Based on Isaac Asimov's 'Foundation' Novels

Apple has followed through with plans to create a television series based on Isaac Asimov's famous Foundation novels and has recently given a straight to series order for the show, reports Deadline. Apple first inked a deal for the TV series adaptation of Foundation back in April, but the show was still in development at that time. The Foundation TV series is being developed by Skydance, with David S. Goyer and Josh Friedman serving as executive producers and showrunners. Goyer has previously worked on "The Dark Knight," "Batman Begins," Ghost Rider," and more, while Friedman is known for "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles" and "Emerald City." Foundation is Isaac Asimov's most popular and well-known science fiction series, which includes titular novel Foundation, Foundation and Empire, and Second Foundation, along with additional books Foundation's Edge and Foundation and Earth. The series follows psychohistory expert and mathematician Hari Seldon who is able to predict the future. Seldon creates a group called the Foundation to preserve humanity's collective knowledge ahead of the impending fall of the Galactic Empire. The novels span many years and cover the rise and fall of multiple empires, making it an ambitious television project. In addition to the Foundation series, Apple has more than a dozen TV shows in development in total, and rumors have suggested we could see the first of these debut starting in March of 2019. For a full list of what Apple's working on, make sure to check out the original content section of our Apple TV roundup.

Apple's Upcoming Drama Based on Child Journalist Hilde Lysiak Gains Lead Actress

Child actress Brooklynn Prince has been cast in the lead role of Apple's upcoming drama series that's based on the life of young journalist Hilde Lysiak, reports Deadline. Eight-year-old actress Prince is known for playing Moonee in "The Florida Project," and she is currently working with Angelina Jolie and Sam Rockwell on "The One and Only Ivan." The upcoming TV show, which will be Prince's first, follows a young girl who moves from New York to the small lakeside town her father is from, where she unearths a murder case everyone else in the town had attempted to bury. The show is based on real-life child journalist Hilde Lysiak's efforts to report on a murder in Selinsgrove, which led to her being the first on the scene to report it. Lysiak's paper, the Orange Street News, has since earned her national and international media attention. Apple has ordered 10 episodes of the series, created and executive produced by Dana Fox and Dara Resnik. Fox is known for her work on "Ben and Kate," "How to Be Single," and "Couples Retreat," while Resnik has worked on "Castle," "Shooter," and Mistresses." Apple has more than a dozen television shows in the works, with a full list available in the original content section of our Apple TV roundup. Several other shows are currently in the casting stages, including an unnamed space drama developed by Ronald D. Moore, a futuristic epic world-building drama called "See," and "Are You Sleeping," a drama based on a murder case reopened by a

Apple's Upcoming Sci-Fi Series From Ronald D. Moore Casts Joel Kinnaman, Michael Dorman, and Sarah Jones

One of Apple's upcoming television shows is an unnamed sci-fi series from Battlestar Galactica developer Ronald D. Moore, which is currently in the casting stages. According to Variety, several actors and actresses have inked deals to star in the show, which has been described as a series that will explore what would have happened had the global space race never ended. Image via Variety Joel Kinnaman has signed on to play Edward Baldwin, a top NASA astronaut, while Michael Dorman and Sarah Jones will play Gordo and Tracy Stevens, a prominent NASA couple. Kinnaman previously played Takeshi Kovacs in "Altered Carbon," along with Will Conway in "House of Cards." He's also known for roles in "Easy Money," "Suicide Squad," and "RoboCop." Michal Dorman has been in "Patriot" and "Wonderland," while Sarah Jones has starred in "Damnation," "The Path," and "Alcatraz." The show was created and written by Moore along with "Fargo" co-executive producers Matt Wolpert and Ben Nedivi. Moore is known for his work on shows like Battlestar Galactica," "Caprica," "Helix," and "Outlander." Apple has more than a dozen original TV shows in the works, several of which are at the point where actors are being cast ahead of filming. Details on all of the shows that Apple has picked up can be found in the original content section of our Apple TV roundup. Rumors have suggested the first of Apple's TV shows could potentially launch in March 2019, perhaps through an upcoming streaming television service.

Apple Picks Up New Video Game Comedy From Charlie Day and Rob McElhenney

Apple gave a straight to series order for a half-hour scripted comedy show created by Rob McElhenney and Charlie Day, reports Variety. The show is said to be set in a video game development studio. Rob McElhenney and Charlie Day are best known for popular comedy show "It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia," which the duo have starred in since 2005 alongside Glenn Howerton, Kaitlin Olson, and Danny DeVito. McElhenney and Day will write and executive produce the series, and McElhenney is set to be one of the show's stars. Apple has inked deals for more than a dozen TV shows, including several other comedy shows. A "You Think It, I'll Say It" TV show based on Curtis Sittenfield's short story collection is in development, as is "Central Park," an animated series developed by Loren Bouchard. A full list of all of the TV shows that Apple has in development is available in the Original Content section of our Apple TV roundup. Rumors suggest the first of Apple's TV shows could debut in the spring of 2019, with Apple perhaps planning to distribute them via a new streaming

Apple Developing New TV Show Based on Bestselling Novel 'Pachinko'

Apple has secured the rights to create a new TV series based on Min Jin Lee's bestselling 2017 novel "Pachinko," reports Variety. "Pachinko," a National Book Award finalist, chronicles the lives of four generations of a poor Korean immigrant family as they migrate to and establish a life in Japan. The story begins in 1911 with the birth of Sunja, who becomes involved with a married yakuza, falling pregnant and facing ruin in her small village. The town's minister offers her a new life in Japan as his wife, where she is alone, lost, and unable to speak the language. The book then follows the Sunja's family through eight decades and four generations. The TV adaptation of "Pachinko" will be written and produced by Soo Hugh, who will also serve as showrunner. Hugh has previously worked on "The Terror," "The Whispers," "Under the Dome," and "The Killing." "Pachinko" is just one of more than a dozen original television shows Apple has in the works, several of which are based on novels. It's not yet clear how Apple will distribute its TV shows, but the Cupertino company is rumored to be considering launching a new streaming video service that would perhaps be bundled with an Apple Music subscription and a digital magazine and news subscription. Rumors have suggested the first of Apple's TV shows could debut in March 2019, and several of them are indeed in the casting phase and could begin filming in the near

Apple's Services Revenue Up 31% Year-Over-Year in 3Q 2018, Company is 'Thrilled' About Upcoming Services Pipeline

Apple's services category continues to see rapid growth, further cementing its position as an important revenue driver for Apple. During the third fiscal quarter of 2018, Apple's services revenue brought in $9.55 billion in revenue, up 31 percent from the $7.27 billion in revenue services earned in the third quarter of 2017. The services category includes iTunes, the App Store, the Mac App Store, Apple Music, iCloud, Apple Pay, and AppleCare. According to Apple CEO Tim Cook, Apple "feels great" about the momentum in its services business, and the company saw double digit growth in its active services installed base. This quarter's growth was driven by strong performance in a number of area. Subscriptions from Apple and third parties have surpassed $300 million, an increase of 60 percent year over year. Cook called the revenue from subscriptions "significant" and an "increasing portion of services." There are now nearly 30,000 apps that offer subscriptions, a number that continues to see strong growth. Cook said that App Store revenue, which set a new June quarter revenue, had exceeded Apple's "wildest expectations." Customers around the world are visiting the App Store more often and downloading more apps than ever before. Citing third-party research, Cook said pointed out that the iOS App Store saw twice the revenue of Google Play. Apple has seen rapid growth in revenue from App Store search ads, with a recent update expanding search ads to Japan, South Korea, France, Germany. Apple Music grew by more than 50 percent year-over-year (with Cook agai

Apple May Turn Fantasy 80s Movie 'Time Bandits' Into a TV Series

Apple is close to securing a deal for the rights to turn 1980s fantasy movie "Time Bandits" into a TV series, reports Deadline. Directed by Terry Gilliam, "Time Bandits" featured the story of an imaginative 11-year-old boy, Kevin, who gets sucked into a fantastical adventure with a band of dwarves during the Napoleonic Wars in Italy. Kevin and the dwarves travel through time using a magical map, visiting places like ancient Greece and the Titanic and fighting off an evil being intent on stealing the map for his own purposes. The original film starred John Cleese, Sean Connery, Shelley Duvall, Kenny Baker, David Warner, Ian Holm, Katherine Helmond, Jim Broadbent, and others. According to Deadline, the new TV series based on the movie will be a co-production between Anonymous Content, Paramount Television, and Media Rights Capital. Gilliam is set to serve as a non-writing executive producer. If Apple secures the rights to the "Time Bandits" TV spinoff, it will join the other more than a dozen television shows Apple has in the works, which span genres from drama to comedy to shows for children. In other related news, comedy writer Regina Hicks has signed on to be a co-showrunner for Apple's upcoming animated television show "Central Park" alongside Loren Bouchard and Josh

Alfre Woodard Joins Cast of Apple's Upcoming Futuristic Drama Series 'See'

Apple's upcoming futuristic drama series "See" gained a new cast member today, with actress Alfre Woodard signing on to play Paris, an advisor and a priestess, reports Variety. Woodard has starred in movies that include "12 Years a Slave," "Annabelle," and "Captain America: Civil War," and she has had roles in several TV shows, such as "Luke Cage," "Desperate Housewives," and "State of Affairs." Alfre Woodard in "Luke Cage" Casting for "See" began earlier this month with Jason Momoa set to play the lead role of Baba Voss, a fearless warrior, leader, and guardian. Momoa is well-known for his role as Khal Drogo in "Game of Thrones," as well as roles in "Aquaman," "Stargate Atlantis," and "Conan the Barbarian." "See" has been described as an epic world-building drama that's set in the future, with little additional information available on the series at this time. Along with "See," Apple has more than a dozen other original TV shows in the works, and rumors have suggested the first of those TV shows could debut in March 2019. We don't yet know how Apple plans to distribute the television shows, but the Cupertino company may be considering launching a new streaming video service to be bundled with an Apple Music subscription and a digital magazine and news

Apple's Morning Show Drama Starring Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston Gains Director Mimi Leder

Apple's upcoming morning show drama, which is set to star Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, will be directed by Mimi Leder, reports Variety. Mimi Leder has directed TV shows that include "The Leftovers," "Shameless," and "ER," along with movies that include "Pay It Forward," "The Peacemaker," and "Deep Impact." Image via Matt Baron/REX/Shutterstock The morning show drama doesn't have a title yet, but it is based on Brian Stelter's book "Top of the Morning" and is said to provide a look into the cutthroat world of morning TV. Stelter's book, for example, "reveals the dark side of morning television" with exclusive details on present and past morning show stars like Matt Lauer, Katie Couric, Ann Curry, Meredith Vieira, and more. Apple has already ordered two seasons of the show, which was one of the first that it picked up. In addition to starring, Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston will also executive produce. Apple has more than a dozen television shows in the works, with details on each available in the original content section of our Apple TV roundup. Apple has not shared details on when its TV shows will launch, but rumors have suggested the first could come in March 2019.

Apple May Create Subscription Service Bundle That Includes Original TV Content, Apple Music and News

Apple may be planning to develop a single subscription service that would offer customers access to its original TV shows, Apple Music, and digital magazines, according to sources with knowledge of the company's plans that spoke to The Information. Apple has ordered multiple television shows, ranging from comedies to dramas, but there has been no clear word on how these shows would be distributed. Its first original shows, "Planet of the Apps" and "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" debuted in Apple Music as a perk for Apple Music subscribers, but that would not likely be sustainable for the more than a dozen shows that are in development, so it makes sense that a wider TV offering is in the works. According to The Information, Apple will begin by launching a digital news subscription service next year, which will combine the Apple News app with magazine subscription service Texture, which Apple purchased back in March. Bloomberg in April also said that Apple was working on such a service. Texture offers subscribers unlimited access to more than 200 digital magazines for $9.99 per month, with titles that include People, Better Homes and Gardens, Time, Forbes, Condé Nast Traveler, Allure, Billboard, Town & Country, ELLE, National Geographic, Rolling Stone, Vogue, and more. Apple eventually plans to bundle the digital news subscription service with both Apple Music and the video content that is in the works, but it is not known when Apple will provide the new subscription offering, nor what it will be priced at. Apple is said to be planning to continue to

Apple Plans English-Language Adaptation of French Show 'Calls'

In the latest piece of news surrounding Apple's original television content plans, the company has given a series order to an adaptation of the French series "Calls," which aired in France beginning in 2017 (via Variety). Created by Timothée Hochet, "Calls" is described as a short-form series that tells stories via snippets of audio taken from real-life situations, as well as through the use of minimal visuals. The show's IMDb and official Facebook pages suggest that many of the episodes lean towards the horror/mystery genre as well. Image via @callscanalplus on Facebook It's believed that the company will keep this format alive in the transition, but the content of the episodes remains unclear. Reports have suggested that Apple intends for most of its shows to eschew mature content in favor of a stable of shows that the entire family can watch -- a decision that led to Bryan Fuller leaving as showrunner on Apple's other series with horror elements, "Amazing Stories." For "Calls," Apple has also acquired the rights to the first season of the French original, suggesting that the company also plans to offer the season as a streaming option on its upcoming service. The amount of episodes and cast members have not yet been revealed for the American version of "Calls." It's been a busy month for news surrounding Apple's TV content plans, as in the past few days alone reports broke about the company officially ordering Kumail Nanjiani and Emily V. Gordon's "Little America" to series, giving a straight-to-series order for a drama about child journalist Hilde Lysiak,

Apple to Develop Kids Programming in Partnership With Sesame Workshop

Apple is partnering up with Sesame Workshop to create a range of programming for children, reports Variety. The partnership was established by Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, who have been heading up Apple's video efforts. Sesame Workshop is a non-profit organization that develops educational children's programs such as "Sesame Street," a popular, well-known, long-running program for kids. According to the terms of the deal, Sesame Workshop will develop live-action and animated series, along with an Apple-exclusive puppet series. Content created for Apple will be original and will not include "Sesame Street," which airs on PBS and HBO. Apple has already signed deals for more than a dozen original television programs, but thus far, the series it is producing have not included content for children. Apple is, however, rumored to be pursuing a deal with Cartoon Saloon, which has previously produced animated films aimed at both children and adults, including "The Secret of Kells," "The Song of the Sea," and "The

Kristen Wiig Drops Out of Upcoming Apple Comedy Series Due to Scheduling Issues

Kristen Wiig is no longer set to star in an upcoming Apple comedy series due to a scheduling conflict with "Wonder Woman 1984," reports Variety. Wiig's exit from the series and the reason behind it were confirmed by an Apple video spokesperson. As was announced back in January, Wiig was set to play the lead role in a 10-episode comedy show based on the "You Think It, I'll Say It" short story collection from Curtis Sittenfeld. The show would have been Wiig's first regular television role since leaving "Saturday Night Live" in 2012. Wiig is instead set to play the villain Cheetah in "Wonder Woman 1984," which is set to be released in November of 2019. The first of Apple's television shows have also been rumored to be debuting in 2019, explaining the scheduling conflicts. Curtis Sittenfeld's book features 10 stories that "upend assumptions about class, relationships, and gender roles in a nation that feels both adrift and viscerally divided," according to its description on Amazon. According to Variety, Apple still wants to develop the series and the producers for the show are regrouping. Apple has dozens of other television projects in the works at the current time, with a full list available in the original programming section of our Apple TV roundup.

Apple Teams Up With Oprah Winfrey to Create New TV Shows

Apple has formed a multi-year production partnership with Oprah Winfrey to create shows for a new video subscription service that is in the works, reports The Wall Street Journal. Apple and Winfrey did not share details on the kind of content that she plans to create, but in a statement, Apple said it would team up with Winfrey to "create original programs." Apple today announced a unique, multi-year content partnership with Oprah Winfrey, the esteemed producer, actress, talk show host, philanthropist and CEO of OWN. Together, Winfrey and Apple will create original programs that embrace her incomparable ability to connect with audiences around the world. Winfrey's projects will be released as part of a lineup of original content from Apple.Apple has signed deals for dozens of original television shows, ranging from ranging from science fiction series "Amazing Stories" to podcast-based drama series "Are You Sleeping" to cartoon series "Central Park." A full list of Apple's TV shows can be found in our Apple TV roundup. The first of Apple's television shows may debut as early as 2019 and while Apple has not clarified how the shows will be distributed, today's report from The Wall Street Journal suggests Apple is working on a streaming video service to deliver its

Apple Close to Inking Deal With Cartoon Saloon for Animated Movie

Apple is working on dozens of original television shows and may also expand into feature films, with the company said to be close to signing a deal for an animated movie. According to Bloomberg, Apple may soon sign a deal with Cartoon Saloon, an animation studio based in Ireland. While Cartoon's Saloon's movie has yet to be made, Apple is aiming to secure distribution rights for the United States and other countries. It's unclear how Apple plans to make the movie available, but a theatrical release, necessary to qualify for Academy Awards, is possible, one of the people said. Apple and Cartoon Saloon had no immediate comment on Thursday.Cartoon Saloon has previously produced Academy Award-nominated animated films including "The Secret of Kells," "The Song of the Sea," and "The Breadwinner." Bloomberg warns that the talks have not yet finished and that the deal could still fall apart, but Apple's discussion with Cartoon Saloon suggests the company is interested in content beyond TV shows. At the current point in time, Apple has established deals for at least 16 television shows, ranging from science fiction series "Amazing Stories" to podcast-based drama series "Are You Sleeping." It is not yet clear how Apple's television shows (and potentially films) will be distributed, but it does have a TV app where it recently made one of its first shows, "Carpool Karaoke: The Series" available to watch. The first of Apple's TV shows could see a debut as soon as 2019, though it's not known if the content will be free, available as part of Apple Music, or