Apple TV+ 'Foundation' leadership rocked after budget drama

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in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV

A new report claims that the show runner of Apple TV+ epic "Foundation" is shifting duties after some behind-the-scenes drama about production and budget cuts.

Foundation poster (Source: Apple TV+)
Foundation poster (Source: Apple TV+)



It's not clear exactly what's going on, beyond some issues with production and budgeting. A report originally claimed that co-creator David S. Goyer was not the show runner any longer, but following that report, a representative from the show said that he was retaining the title.

The report published on Saturday by The Hollywood Reporter claims that instead of running the show on-location Goyer will contribute scripts from Los Angeles. Executive producer Bill Bost will handle the production from the show's primary filming location in Prague.

Other changes include line producer Laurie Borg exiting the production. Doug Moreno is said to take Borg's duties.

Reasons for the shifts are said to be primarily budget-oriented. Previously, it was reported that Apple TV+ was spending $5 million per episode, meaning $50 million every season.

"Foundation" had already seen its third season production interrupted by the Writers' Guild and SAG-AFTRA actors' union strike during 2023. Production was scheduled to resume in February, with around two-thirds of the season still to be shot.

But, cast and crew arriving in Prague and Poland for filming were sent home. Unspecified production issues were said to be the cause, and a ballooning budget was also said to be an issue.

Separately, Apple TV+ drama "Silo" was similarly shut down during production because of the strikes, but it has resumed filming its second season.



Read on AppleInsider

Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    So the show's budget doesn't have a great… Foundation?
    michelb76chasm
  • Reply 2 of 18
    $50 million a season with ten episodes seems like quite a bargain compared to what Amazon spent for the first season of "The Rings of Power." That $50 million for a season wouldn't even cover a single episode of the latter.

    Accounting for just the production budget of $465 million, when spread over The Rings of Power’s eight episodes, it results in a cost per episode of $58.1 million. But if we include purchasing the rights on top of that, it equates to a jaw-dropping $89.4 million per episode. In both instances, it makes The Rings of Power the most expensive TV show ever made and by some margin.

    https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2022/09/01/the-rings-of-power-cost-per-episode-budget-most-expensive-tv-show/

    watto_cobraking editor the grateStrangeDays
  • Reply 3 of 18
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    watto_cobraStrangeDays
  • Reply 4 of 18
    inkling said:
    $50 million a season with ten episodes seems like quite a bargain compared to what Amazon spent for the first season of "The Rings of Power." That $50 million for a season wouldn't even cover a single episode of the latter.

    Accounting for just the production budget of $465 million, when spread over The Rings of Power’s eight episodes, it results in a cost per episode of $58.1 million. But if we include purchasing the rights on top of that, it equates to a jaw-dropping $89.4 million per episode. In both instances, it makes The Rings of Power the most expensive TV show ever made and by some margin.

    https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2022/09/01/the-rings-of-power-cost-per-episode-budget-most-expensive-tv-show/

    I can imagine Prime having more viewers than Apple TV, with Foundation definitely not being for a large audience, while Rings of Power so far has been quite popular, and worked as  a catalyst for subscribers. 
    williamlondon
  • Reply 5 of 18
    XedXed Posts: 2,539member
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    watto_cobra
  • Reply 6 of 18
    Foundation is one of my favorite shows.  I think the show runners were hoping for 8 or 9 seasons to finish out the story arc.   It would be disappointing to not see this completed.   It really is an amazing story and Apple (and the show) have done a great job in crafting it for AppleTV+
    watto_cobraking editor the gratemacfabulousspheric
  • Reply 7 of 18
    I’ve seen that $5 million/ episode number repeated on AI many times, but I’m calling bs on it.

    $5 million/hour is about what a broadcast TV drama costs, like Law & Order, The Good Doctor, 911, etc.

    Given the production costs reported for other streaming shows, I wouldn’t be surprised if it was 3-5x that $5 million/ episode.
    williamlondon
  • Reply 8 of 18
    michelb76 said:
    inkling said:
    $50 million a season with ten episodes seems like quite a bargain compared to what Amazon spent for the first season of "The Rings of Power." That $50 million for a season wouldn't even cover a single episode of the latter.

    Accounting for just the production budget of $465 million, when spread over The Rings of Power’s eight episodes, it results in a cost per episode of $58.1 million. But if we include purchasing the rights on top of that, it equates to a jaw-dropping $89.4 million per episode. In both instances, it makes The Rings of Power the most expensive TV show ever made and by some margin.

    https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2022/09/01/the-rings-of-power-cost-per-episode-budget-most-expensive-tv-show/

    I can imagine Prime having more viewers than Apple TV, with Foundation definitely not being for a large audience, while Rings of Power so far has been quite popular, and worked as  a catalyst for subscribers
    how do you quantify that when Prime Video is force-bundled into Prime? I have Prime for deliveries. Do you think people signed up to $140 or whatever Prime is now just for that show? I sure don’t. 
    edited February 26
  • Reply 9 of 18
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    SoCal4me
  • Reply 10 of 18
    XedXed Posts: 2,539member
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    ST: TNG is a low-budget network sci-fi series that started in the 1980s with 4:3 640x480 resolution video on film. When it was remastered for Blu-ray the low-quality became apparent. So much so that there's a very long video detailing so of the cheap solutions and mistakes that would've been impossible to notice when it aired.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzJqarYU5Io

    Not only is Foundation a better written long form story that doesn't even compare to the mostly episodic network series, it also doesn't take place in such a cheap or simple settings and has to deal with high definition video as the norm. It takes 27 old TVs to equal the resolution of a 4K display. 
    williamlondon
  • Reply 11 of 18
    thrangthrang Posts: 1,008member
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    Was about to post similarly - if the $50M per episode is true, I would say, from an overall dramatic/entertainment assessment, not close to "worth it" IMO. The writing is often weak, with plot and decision points seemingly written just to move the narrative in a certain direction, but not necessarily based on legitimate character motivation or even reasonable internal logic.

    Silo was disappointing to me as well - the series, (except for the first and last episodes which I thought were good), was mostly very slow paced and repetitive (the plot progression in those middle 8 episodes could have been covered in two or three...)

    Separately, I'm hoping Dune 2 is better than Dune 1, which was rather emotionless, a bit turgid, and spent nearly no time establishing the deep rooted motivations of the characters, Houses, and Emperor needed to care about what was happening. Again, subpar writing. And I'm a big Villeneuve fan...
    StrangeDayswilliamlondon
  • Reply 12 of 18
    Xed said:
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    ST: TNG is a low-budget network sci-fi series that started in the 1980s with 4:3 640x480 resolution video on film. When it was remastered for Blu-ray the low-quality became apparent. So much so that there's a very long video detailing so of the cheap solutions and mistakes that would've been impossible to notice when it aired.

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yzJqarYU5Io

    Not only is Foundation a better written long form story that doesn't even compare to the mostly episodic network series, it also doesn't take place in such a cheap or simple settings and has to deal with high definition video as the norm. It takes 27 old TVs to equal the resolution of a 4K display. 
    Again, those are choices — today’s production companies value expensive grand sets over story, which is why they can only afford 10 episodes max, making it much harder for character growth. It shows. 

    TNG and DS9 were indeed much less expensive to produce. And yet, they remain better shows, due to the depth of the characters and storylines which took place over 25 eps a season, for 7 seasons. I just finished a rewatch of each and can confirm. Foundation? Silly soap opera with terribly written characters (Salvor Hardin is an absolute joke, for example. Not even the shadow of the book’s Hardin). Not a chance these types of shows get 7 seasons. Same reason GOT dropped its per-season ep count, show was too expensive to reproduce. These productions get crushed under their own weight. 
    danox
  • Reply 13 of 18
    chasmchasm Posts: 3,291member
    Xed said:
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    We’ve already seen what happens going that route: Sky Captain and the World of Tomorrow.

    And yes, it sucked.
  • Reply 14 of 18
    So the show's budget doesn't have a great… Foundation?
    My knee hurts from slapping.
  • Reply 15 of 18
    danoxdanox Posts: 2,840member
    thrang said:
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    Was about to post similarly - if the $50M per episode is true, I would say, from an overall dramatic/entertainment assessment, not close to "worth it" IMO. The writing is often weak, with plot and decision points seemingly written just to move the narrative in a certain direction, but not necessarily based on legitimate character motivation or even reasonable internal logic.

    Silo was disappointing to me as well - the series, (except for the first and last episodes which I thought were good), was mostly very slow paced and repetitive (the plot progression in those middle 8 episodes could have been covered in two or three...)

    Separately, I'm hoping Dune 2 is better than Dune 1, which was rather emotionless, a bit turgid, and spent nearly no time establishing the deep rooted motivations of the characters, Houses, and Emperor needed to care about what was happening. Again, subpar writing. And I'm a big Villeneuve fan...
    Dune the source material is the same in terms of one dimensional dry characters and Foundation is very close to the same Frank Herbert and Isaac Asimov styles are very alike in that way. That is the biggest challenge for any media/production company trying to make a movie or tv series out of those books.

    Making something that hasn't been made for TV or Movies by Richard Matheson might have been better, far superior source material. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Matheson
    edited February 27
  • Reply 16 of 18
    michelb76 said:
    inkling said:
    $50 million a season with ten episodes seems like quite a bargain compared to what Amazon spent for the first season of "The Rings of Power." That $50 million for a season wouldn't even cover a single episode of the latter.

    Accounting for just the production budget of $465 million, when spread over The Rings of Power’s eight episodes, it results in a cost per episode of $58.1 million. But if we include purchasing the rights on top of that, it equates to a jaw-dropping $89.4 million per episode. In both instances, it makes The Rings of Power the most expensive TV show ever made and by some margin.

    https://www.hitc.com/en-gb/2022/09/01/the-rings-of-power-cost-per-episode-budget-most-expensive-tv-show/

    I can imagine Prime having more viewers than Apple TV, with Foundation definitely not being for a large audience, while Rings of Power so far has been quite popular, and worked as  a catalyst for subscribers
    how do you quantify that when Prime Video is force-bundled into Prime? I have Prime for deliveries. Do you think people signed up to $140 or whatever Prime is now just for that show? I sure don’t. 
    I'm not looking at subscriber numbers, but viewer numbers for the Prime shows.
  • Reply 17 of 18
    thrang said:
    Xed said:
    Good scripts and good casting come first. FX shouldn’t be the reason for watching a show.
    Not the reason, but sets are important. Imagine all the same writing and casting but all you see is a green screen and large cuts that just say what completely CG scene is being displayed between the dialogue. It would suck big monkey balls.
    Sets aren’t that important. Star Trek TNG’s main sets - the bridge, the conference room, the bar. Story is what happens. Too many of the new shows (including New Trek) are spending obscene amounts for movie-quality sets, while under emphasizing story and character development. Foundation included. 
    Was about to post similarly - if the $50M per episode is true, I would say, from an overall dramatic/entertainment assessment, not close to "worth it" IMO. The writing is often weak, with plot and decision points seemingly written just to move the narrative in a certain direction, but not necessarily based on legitimate character motivation or even reasonable internal logic.

    Silo was disappointing to me as well - the series, (except for the first and last episodes which I thought were good), was mostly very slow paced and repetitive (the plot progression in those middle 8 episodes could have been covered in two or three...)

    Separately, I'm hoping Dune 2 is better than Dune 1, which was rather emotionless, a bit turgid, and spent nearly no time establishing the deep rooted motivations of the characters, Houses, and Emperor needed to care about what was happening. Again, subpar writing. And I'm a big Villeneuve fan...
    Hilarious that you jump in on a budget/production story about one show to try to throw Dune under the bus as somehow "subpar" and "turgid" 🤣!! Really there's just 100% nobody that would agree with you, unless they're also just doing so for attention.
  • Reply 18 of 18
    inkling said:
    $50 million a season with ten episodes seems like quite a bargain
    That figure is far too low. Goyer said that amount was only for the production costs in Ireland.
    williamlondon
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