Apple TV+ is looking to ramp up its investment in original movies, and has hired a former WarnerMedia executive to help it, according to The Information.
The report cites “two people familiar with the situation” as saying that Apple wants to “beef up its original film production” to better compete in the streaming stakes.
New arrival Jessie Henderson previously served as executive VP of feature films for HBO Max. At Apple, she will report to Matt Dentler, an Apple employee since 2012, who focused on bringing original movies to Apple.
“While Apple has dabbled in films for its streaming service, such as the documentary The Beastie Boys Story, it hasn’t made a big push into feature films,” The Information writes. “Over the past several months, it has told studio executives it is looking to do more than 10-12 movies a year for the service, and would like to hire someone to help oversee the push.”
I wrote last year about Apple’s apparent pivot to original movies. This landscape changed dramatically during the COVID-19 pandemic, with the likes of Disney opting to debut theatrical movies on Disney+. At the end of 2020, Warner Bros. announced that its entire 2021 slate of movies — including The Matrix 4, Denis Villeneuve’s Dune remake and Sopranos prequel The Many Saints of Newark — would arrive on HBO Max at the same time as theaters. (The theater part is important, not least because a movie needs to screen theatrically to be eligible for an Oscar.)
Apple’s original movie slate
Apple, for its part, has increasingly embraced movies. Big upcoming original projects include Emancipation starring Will Smith, an adaptation of graphic novel Snow Blind starring Jake Gyllenhaal, and Martin Scorsese’s Killers of the Flower Moon.
From the sound of things, Apple’s focus on original movies is only going to increase. Alongside original TV series, movies provide exclusive content that can help make streaming services stand out. In Apple’s case, it’s got a harder job than most, since it doesn’t have a studio’s back catalog to draw from.
Which Apple TV+ movies have you enjoyed so far? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.
Source: The Information