Apple, Oprah Winfrey sign multi-year deal for TV programming

Posted:
in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited June 15
Apple and Oprah Winfrey have teamed in a long-term partnership to develop programming and original content for what will likely become Apple's streaming video service.




There is almost nothing known about what will be published. Apple's statement on the matter is short, only saying that "Winfrey and Apple will create original programs that embrace her incomparable ability to connect with audiences around the world."

Winfrey had her own television channel, OWN, that is run by her own Harpo Studios, in conjunction with Discovery, Inc. She sold the majority of her stake in the network to Discovery in December 2017, but is still the CEO of the network.

In February 2015, OWN was available to over 70 percent of the US households with cable or satellite service.

The terms of the deal are unknown. The content will likely be tied to the ongoing efforts Apple has undertaken to develop video content -- few of which have borne any fruit as of yet, with the released ones not being particularly successful.

In August of 2017, Apple was said to be investing $1 billion in unique content and programming. Apple's rumored budget is roughly what Amazon spent in 2013 when it launched its first original shows. It's still, however, about half what HBO spent in 2016, making it unlikely that the company will directly tackle industry stalwarts, at least at first.

Since then, Apple also reportedly provided a blank check to Drake for his own shows and movies, and signed a deal with "Star Trek" and "Battlestar Galactica" reboot alum Ronald D. Moore for a new space drama. It is also reportedly paying $5 million per episode on a ten-episode season of "Amazing Stories," a revival of the Amblin Television and NBCUniversal science fiction anthology.

Reese Witherspoon's Hello Sunshine studio is linked to three projects tied to Apple. The first show is as of yet untitled, but features Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston in a drama based on morning show production.

The second show is development of Nichelle Tramble Spellman's "Are You Sleeping," with the "Serial" podcast creator onboard in an advisory role, and Octavia Spencer starring. The third is a sketch comedy show starring Kristen Wiig.

More recently, Apple signed a deal with "La La Land" writer and director Damien Chazelle, and another with "The Big Sick" writers Kumail Nanjiani of "Silicon Valley" and Emily V. Gordon.

These are all thought to be part of a broader $1 billion investment in original programming, which is considerable but still a lower investment than those of its competitors, such as Netflix's reported $7 billion on original content for 2018.

Other efforts are in progress, and AppleInsider is chronicling them all in a comprehensive list.
ronn
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 54
    AppleishAppleish Posts: 68member
    I remember when a friend of mine almost got divorced because of her show. He would get home after work and his wife would tell him all the things he was doing wrong because he heard it on "Oprah." This was in the early years of her show when it had more of a near-Jerry Springer type format. Years later, she softened up the format and started attracting stars.

    She's not a bad person, but she sure started as one. Not interested in her programing.
    patchythepiratemwhitetylersdadmike54anton zuykovwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 54
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,391member
    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just started hiring media/entertainment people and green lighting shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    edited June 15 patchythepirateanantksundaram
  • Reply 3 of 54
    Appleish said:
    I remember when a friend of mine almost got divorced because of her show. He would get home after work and his wife would tell him all the things he was doing wrong because he heard it on "Oprah." This was in the early years of her show when it had more of a near-Jerry Springer type format. Years later, she softened up the format and started attracting stars.

    She's not a bad person, but she sure started as one. Not interested in her programing.
    Sure you are. You need something to criticize. :-) It's funny you compare and contrast Jerry Springer with Oprah Winfrey. Early Jerry used to be more like later Oprah. And then they dramatically swapped audiences.
    ronnfastasleepwatto_cobramdriftmeyer
  • Reply 4 of 54
    jgojcajjgojcaj Posts: 7member
    AMAZINGGG...
    In the meantime, though, Apple- Can you fix the MBP keyboard? Thanks a bunch. 
  • Reply 5 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 5,819member
    Appleish said:
    I remember when a friend of mine almost got divorced because of her show. He would get home after work and his wife would tell him all the things he was doing wrong because he heard it on "Oprah." This was in the early years of her show when it had more of a near-Jerry Springer type format. Years later, she softened up the format and started attracting stars.

    She's not a bad person, but she sure started as one. Not interested in her programing.
    So because your friend's wife (supposedly) incorrectly told her husband he was doing marriage wrong because Oprah Show, that failure of marriage and communication and perhaps intelligence transfers over to Oprah? Wut?
    Solironnfastasleepjony0
  • Reply 6 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 5,819member

    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just start hire media/entertainment people and green light shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    So you're claiming no one at Apple knows why exactly certain shows are pursued and green lit? What a strange claim. I would bet my life on there being people at Apple who do indeed know why exactly shows are brought onboard.

    Oh, you're confusing people outside of Apple for people inside of Apple. I see. Yes that's also strange, that you would expect to know the business reasons people inside of Apple are using to direct their projects.
    ronnfastasleepjcs2305watto_cobramdriftmeyerchris_ca
  • Reply 7 of 54
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 3,557administrator
    Odds are, if your post was deleted, its because it got caught up in a sweep after an early post got deleted.

    That said, it might be time to brush up on the forum guidelines. Don't start a partisan fight.
    ronn
  • Reply 8 of 54
    bitmodbitmod Posts: 174member
    jgojcaj said:
    AMAZINGGG...
    In the meantime, though, Apple- Can you fix the MBP keyboard? Thanks a bunch. 
    No shit, right!?
    I like my computer companies to focus on technology that my business needs to operate... not daytime TV windbags. 
    Like those Mac Pros they promised 4 years ago... we get Oprah instead.
    edited June 15 mwhiteAtomikTacoentropys
  • Reply 9 of 54
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,391member

    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just start hire media/entertainment people and green light shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    So you're claiming no one at Apple knows why exactly certain shows are pursued and green lit? What a strange claim. I would bet my life on there being people at Apple who do indeed know why exactly shows are brought onboard.

    Oh, you're confusing people outside of Apple for people inside of Apple. I see. Yes that's also strange, that you would expect to know the business reasons people inside of Apple are using to direct their projects.
    Yes. It’s one thing for future hardware or software projects that don’t leak but pretty much every show Apple has greenlit has leaked to a trade publication. And this Oprah news came from an Apple announcement that was only a few sentences. Still no formal announcement from Apple that they are getting into the business of original content and according to Recode people involved with the projects they’ve greenlit don’t know what their plans are. I’m sorry but I think that’s quite odd.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
  • Reply 10 of 54
    nunzynunzy Posts: 662member
    Oprah knows how to rake in the bucks. Apple can attract that level of expertise on a consistent basis.

    Everything she touches turns into gold. Smart Apple. Very smart.
    ronn
  • Reply 11 of 54
    Mike WuertheleMike Wuerthele Posts: 3,557administrator

    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just start hire media/entertainment people and green light shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    So you're claiming no one at Apple knows why exactly certain shows are pursued and green lit? What a strange claim. I would bet my life on there being people at Apple who do indeed know why exactly shows are brought onboard.

    Oh, you're confusing people outside of Apple for people inside of Apple. I see. Yes that's also strange, that you would expect to know the business reasons people inside of Apple are using to direct their projects.
    Yes. It’s one thing for future hardware or software projects that don’t leak but pretty much every show Apple has greenlit has leaked to a trade publication. And this Oprah news came from an Apple announcement that was only a few sentences. Still no formal announcement from Apple that they are getting into the business of original content and according to Recode people involved with the projects they’ve greenlit don’t know what their plans are. I’m sorry but I think that’s quite odd.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    This seems like a pretty formal announcement that they're getting into original content. So did Planet of the Apps and Carpool Karaoke.

    "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."

    This is 100% of today's announcement.
    edited June 15 ronnfastasleep
  • Reply 12 of 54
    roakeroake Posts: 607member
    Somehow, reading this made me wonder if I could afford Apple products if I somehow end up on welfare.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 13 of 54
    Why does Apple have to try and copy what everyone else does? Music, self-driving car, TV content, etc.....I mean what the hell?? Let those companies be great at the one thing they do and the consumer reaps the reward. You can't be in every space and be great at it. So should HBO create a phone now?

    How depressing that the de facto company that lead the way in technology innovation now has such a fragmented focus they can't get the results Apple used to bring to creatives and consumers. It's like a restaurant that has 30 things on the menu. They don't do any of them great so you get mediocre results and nothing innovative. Apple needs leadership again that wants to rock the space they were great at and lose this antiquated own everything Microsoft perspective.
    mike54tylersdad
  • Reply 14 of 54
    SpamSandwichSpamSandwich Posts: 30,076member
    More milquetoast offerings. How is this very different from the stuff that is available on network or cable TV? I'm not seeing the logic in the thinking behind these deals.
  • Reply 15 of 54
    jdgazjdgaz Posts: 309member
    What a shame. Waste of money. 
    redraider11mike54tylersdadanton zuykovwatto_cobra
  • Reply 16 of 54
    Really wish Apple wouldn’t try and follow Amazon’s and Netflix’s lead here. They don’t need to be in the content creation business. Why don’t they instead help Disney out with buying the rights to Fox and offer whatever streaming options that merger has to offer free or discounted rate to people who own Apple products?
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 17 of 54
    rogifan_newrogifan_new Posts: 3,391member

    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just start hire media/entertainment people and green light shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    So you're claiming no one at Apple knows why exactly certain shows are pursued and green lit? What a strange claim. I would bet my life on there being people at Apple who do indeed know why exactly shows are brought onboard.

    Oh, you're confusing people outside of Apple for people inside of Apple. I see. Yes that's also strange, that you would expect to know the business reasons people inside of Apple are using to direct their projects.
    Yes. It’s one thing for future hardware or software projects that don’t leak but pretty much every show Apple has greenlit has leaked to a trade publication. And this Oprah news came from an Apple announcement that was only a few sentences. Still no formal announcement from Apple that they are getting into the business of original content and according to Recode people involved with the projects they’ve greenlit don’t know what their plans are. I’m sorry but I think that’s quite odd.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    This seems like a pretty formal announcement that they're getting into original content. So did Planet of the Apps and Carpool Karaoke.

    "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."

    This is 100% of today's announcement.
    I guess they did sort of announce it when they put out a press release about the two hires from Sony,

    https://www.apple.com/newsroom/2017/06/jamie-erlicht-and-zack-van-amburg-joining-apple-to-lead-video-programming/

    It still seems like this foray into original content is a result of other things not panning out the way Apple planned. I’m curious what their narrative behind this will be, especially if the driving force is really just extracting more $$ out of existing customers. If it’s bundled with other things and can be pitched like an Amazon Prime type service it could be compelling. If it’s just here’s some original TV programming you can get for $10/mo with no good explanation of why Apple is getting into this space I can see it being a head scratcher.
    edited June 15
  • Reply 18 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 5,819member

    This whole content thing from Apple is weird. Weird in that they’ve never formally announced anything. They just start hire media/entertainment people and green light shows. But no one knows exactly what for. This Oprah press release was only a few sentences long. According to Recode Apple hasn’t even told some of the people it’s working with what it plans to do with the stuff it’s greenlighting. Odd all around.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    So you're claiming no one at Apple knows why exactly certain shows are pursued and green lit? What a strange claim. I would bet my life on there being people at Apple who do indeed know why exactly shows are brought onboard.

    Oh, you're confusing people outside of Apple for people inside of Apple. I see. Yes that's also strange, that you would expect to know the business reasons people inside of Apple are using to direct their projects.
    Yes. It’s one thing for future hardware or software projects that don’t leak but pretty much every show Apple has greenlit has leaked to a trade publication. And this Oprah news came from an Apple announcement that was only a few sentences. Still no formal announcement from Apple that they are getting into the business of original content and according to Recode people involved with the projects they’ve greenlit don’t know what their plans are. I’m sorry but I think that’s quite odd.

    https://www.recode.net/platform/amp/2018/6/15/17468350/oprah-winfrey-apple-tv?__twitter_impression=true
    Then you don't know Apple very well. It's not odd at all for Apple not to spell out their plans or let outsiders know "exactly what for". They'll announce what & when they're ready to.

    The final sentence in that article:

    "Apple declined to comment on its content plans."

    ...which is not the same as not having a plan, and not unusual for Apple.
    fastasleep
  • Reply 19 of 54
    StrangeDaysStrangeDays Posts: 5,819member

    Why does Apple have to try and copy what everyone else does? Music, self-driving car, TV content, etc.....I mean what the hell?? Let those companies be great at the one thing they do and the consumer reaps the reward. You can't be in every space and be great at it. So should HBO create a phone now?

    How depressing that the de facto company that lead the way in technology innovation now has such a fragmented focus they can't get the results Apple used to bring to creatives and consumers. It's like a restaurant that has 30 things on the menu. They don't do any of them great so you get mediocre results and nothing innovative. Apple needs leadership again that wants to rock the space they were great at and lose this antiquated own everything Microsoft perspective.
    What on earth are you talking about? All of Apple's products fit on a table, and they say No to ideas all the time. They even made a video about it:



    Services is a separate income stream than products, and offering music or TV or whatever isn't going to dilute their product designers & engineers any. Different jobs, dude.
    fastasleepclaire1mdriftmeyer
  • Reply 20 of 54
    eightzeroeightzero Posts: 2,195member
    jgojcaj said:
    AMAZINGGG...
    In the meantime, though, Apple- Can you fix the MBP keyboard? Thanks a bunch. 
    My initial reaction to the headline was, "whelp, that's one article that there is no way to comment on appropriately."

    Then I read your comment.

    Well played, sir. 
    watto_cobra
This discussion has been closed.