Today in Apple history: iTunes bags its first exclusive movie

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The producers of Purple Violets took a gamble on iTunes movie distribution.
The producers of Purple Violets take a gamble on iTunes movie distribution.
Photo: Wild Ocean Films

November 20: Today in Apple history: iTunes movie distribution begins with Purple Violets, the first film to launch on iTunes November 20, 2007: In a milestone for iTunes movie distribution, Purple Violets becomes the first feature film to launch exclusively on Apple’s platform.

A romantic comedy directed by Edward Burns, Purple Violets stars Selma Blair, Debra Messing and Patrick Wilson. With limited offers from distributors, the filmmakers pin their hopes on iTunes distribution as an alternative way to get their movie in front of viewers.

Focusing on major movies could prime Apple TV+ for success [Opinion]

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It's the perfect time for Apple TV+ to makes its move with movies.
It's the perfect time for Apple TV+ to makes its move with movies.
Photo: riviera 2005/Flickr CC

The deal to bring legendary director Martin Scorsese’s future films to Apple TV+ sounds like a gift for movie fans who subscribe to the streaming service.

But signing Scorsese and other top filmmakers could turn out to be a shrewd and self-serving move that benefits Apple, too. Focusing on films crafted by the world’s top directors could differentiate the fledgling Apple TV+ from dominant rivals like Netflix. And it looks like Apple might be timing the market perfectly.

Universal will sell digital movies just weeks after their theatrical debut

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Some analysts think Apple should snap up a movie studio. Bad idea!
Or you could watch them from the comfort of your own home.
Photo: Naoya Fujii/Flickr CC

A new deal means that movie fans won’t be waiting as long to see Universal Pictures movies pop up for sale on iTunes and other digital platforms after their theatrical debut.

According to a Wall Street Journal article, an agreement between theater chain AMC Entertainment and Universal means that the theatrical exclusivity window will be cut from 75 days to just 17 days. This means certain titles will be available after just 2.5 weeks after they first arrived in theaters.

Today in Apple history: iTunes ditches movie trailer downloads

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Apple's iTunes movie trailers go dark as streaming supplants downloads.
iTunes movie trailers go dark.
Photo: Tookapic/Pexels CC

May 24: Today in Apple history: iTunes ditches movie trailer downloads May 24, 2013: Apple begins phasing out the option for users to download movie trailers from its once enormously popular trailers.apple.com website.

The move signifies a major change taking place in the way customers consume digital content. Downloads will continue to decline as streaming services like YouTube and Netflix pick up steam.

Today in Apple history: Apple pays $15 million to promote Mission: Impossible

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Sadly, Apple's Mission: Impossible deal doesn't quite work out as planned.
Sadly it doesn't quite work out as planned.
Photo: Paramount

April 18: Today in Apple history: Apple pays $15 million for Mission: Impossible movie tie-in April 18, 1996: Apple unveils a massive $15 million promotional tie-in for the Mission: Impossible movie starring Tom Cruise.

Designed to promote the PowerBook, which Cruise uses in the spy flick, the marketing campaign comes at a particularly bad time. With Apple attempting to climb back into the black after reporting its largest quarterly loss ever, the company is in the middle of trying to perform its very own impossible mission. And that’s just the start of the problems.

How to use Apple TV app’s new data-saving features

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The Apple TV app gets a raft of new features in iOS 12.3.
The Apple TV app just added new data saving features.
Photo: Ed Hardy/Cult of Mac

Binge-watching your favorite Apple TV shows on an iPhone is a great way to run through your data plan limits if you’re not careful, so Apple is introducing a way to wrangle in your data slurping habits.

iOS 13.4 beta 2 introduced some new settings to the Apple TV app for iPhone and iPad, giving users the option to control the size of downloads as well as lowering the amount of data used while streaming content. If Apple’s TV app is one of your major entertainment hubs, you’ll want to know how to take advantage of the new features.

Share your music with other AirPods, wirelessly

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AirPods sharing
Things are about to get romantic.
Photo: Charlie Sorrel/Cult of Mac

If you and a friend both have AirPods or Beats headphones, you can share audio coming from a single iPhone or iPad. This is great for listening to the same music track or podcast, or — most useful I reckon — watching a movie together. Apple makes it really easy for you to share your audio stream with someone else. In fact, you could say it’s easier than doing it the old way, because A) there are no wires to get tangled and B) there’s no splitter adapter to lose.

Here’s how to set up audio sharing on AirPods.

Apple TV+ picks up second movie from A24 studios

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Apple spent more than $20 million advertising Apple TV+ last month
Apple TV+ is stocking up on movies now.
Photo: Apple

Apple TV+ is starting to stock up on new movies.

Apple has inked its second film deal with indie studio A24, which is already working with the iPhone-maker on Sofia Coppola’s next movie. The two companies are set to produce an adaptation of the critically acclaimed young adult novel The Sky Is Everywhere written by Jandy Nelson.

Apple snaps up Christmas Carol movie with Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds

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Will Ferrell
But will it be Anchorman Will Ferrell or Holmes and Watson Will Ferrell?
Photo: Eva Rinaldi/Wikipedia CC

Apple has picked up the rights to a musical adaptation of Charles Dickens’ A Christmas Carol, starring Will Ferrell and Ryan Reynolds.

The movie, which will be shown on Apple TV+, will be written and directed by Sean Anders and John Morris, the creators of the hit Daddy’s Home movies.