Apple’s original movies could hit theaters near you

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Stephen Spielberg announcers Amazing Stories for Apple TV Plus.
Steven Spielberg’s 1980s anthology, Amazing Stories, is being reimagined for Apple TV+
Photo: Apple

Apple TV+ may not be the only place to enjoy Apple’s original movies. Sources say Cupertino wants to bring its content to theaters in an effort to attract top Hollywood directors.

The move would also make Apple’s movies eligible for big awards.

It must be a pretty spectacular feeling for directors and producers when their latest movies hits theaters for the first time. I’m guessing it’s not quite the same buzz when their films debut on Netflix.

This is one of the problems streaming services have faced when trying to attract Hollywood’s finest talent. But Apple could be preparing to offer the best of both worlds.

Apple TV+ content headed to theaters?

Apple is planning to debut new feature-length movies in theaters weeks before they hit Apple TV+, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal.

“The company has made overtures to cinema chains and consulted with an entertainment executive as it pursues a traditional theatrical-release plan that would keep its movies in theaters for weeks before becoming available on Apple TV+,” it reads.

The move would not only make Apple TV+ more appealing to Hollywood directors and producers. It would also make Apple’s content eligible for top awards like the Oscars.

The rules of the Academy Awards state that to be eligible for awards consideration, feature-length films must be publicly exhibited for at least seven days in a Los Angeles County theater.

Apple has big hopes

Apple has hired Greg Foster, former head of the entertainment division at IMAX, to develop its theater strategy, WSJ adds. And it already has plans for public screenings.

The Elephant Queen, Apple’s first movie, which is scheduled for a November 1 release on Apple TV+, is also expected to hit theaters so that it can qualify for next year’s awards.

On the Rocks, another movie starring Rashida Jones, could premiere at the Cannes Film Festival before making its theatrical debut. That’s if Apple can secure the necessary deals.

Apple has little interest in making money from those theatrical releases, sources say. Its primary goals are to be included in big awards, and to attract Hollywood’s biggest names.