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Apple wants Oscars and Emmys for its original content, just like Netflix

Published Mar 15th, 2019 9:03PM EDT
Apple streaming service
Image: Eric Risberg/AP/REX/Shutterstock

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Lest anyone out there was still wondering how committed Apple is to producing premium original content that generates buzz among critics and the general public, we’re learning something new about its ambitions ahead of the company’s big March 25 media event. That’s when Apple is expected to finally detail what its upcoming streaming video service will consist of, for which the company is also apparently making some key hires of behind-the-scenes Hollywood power players.

Apple has started putting together a team of heavy-hitters that can help put the company’s content into contention for prestigious industry awards, like Oscars and Emmys.

That’s according to a Bloomberg report Friday, which notes that Apple has poached one such hire from the TV group at Disney along with bringing on other industry veterans who know how to formulate campaigns for top entertainment awards. The report goes on to hint that Apple could put its original shows, the first of which will start arriving later this year, in the running for Emmy awards as soon as next year — though Apple is also apparently still looking for a high-powered talent that can lead the overall strategy effort.

It’s a key role, given that such strategists are responsible for putting on a variety of publicity-generating events for movie industry players while also making sure to stay within very defined industry guidelines.

From what we’ve been able to discern from the chatter so far about what Apple is planning in the streaming video arena, it seems that the company’s Netflix rival will be dominated by content from third parties at launch — not Apple’s own original shows. Those won’t start premiering on the service in volume until later this year, but of course we’ll know more in terms of the shows themselves and timing at the March 25 event happening at the Steve Jobs Theater on Apple’s campus.

Bloomberg’s reporting has revealed that Apple was working to have content deals locked in place by Friday, with some other unconfirmed reports about Apple’s new service including the fact that the iPhone maker will apparently charge users for some of the content. However, some of the content will also be free to Apple users, presumably as a move to ensure that the company has a chance at the widest possible audience for its shows — for which it’s green-lit projects from the likes of Oprah Winfrey to Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Steven Spielberg and more.

Andy Meek Trending News Editor

Andy Meek is a reporter based in Memphis who has covered media, entertainment, and culture for over 20 years. His work has appeared in outlets including The Guardian, Forbes, and The Financial Times, and he’s written for BGR since 2015. Andy's coverage includes technology and entertainment, and he has a particular interest in all things streaming.

Over the years, he’s interviewed legendary figures in entertainment and tech that range from Stan Lee to John McAfee, Peter Thiel, and Reed Hastings.