Apple Will Reportedly Release Originals In Theaters Before Streaming

  • General
  • September 29, 2019
  • 2
  • 5 minutes read
Apple co-heads of video programming, Zack Van Amburg (left) and Jamie Erlicht, talk about the company’s new streaming service at an Apple event. Amburg and Erlicht previously served as presidents at Sony Pictures Television

image: Apple

According to a recent report from the Wall Street Journal, Apple, which recently unveiled a new streaming service featuring exclusive productions from Hollywood bigwigs like Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and J.J. Abrams, will debut its feature-length films in theaters before making them available for streaming. According to the Journal, Apple has made precursory approaches to cinema chains and also consulted with an entertainment executive as it pursues a plan to keep its originals in theaters for weeks before they’re made available on AppleTV+, its recently unveiled streaming app.

The Journal reports Apple is currently reaching out to theater-industry representatives, and plans to release its movies first in cinemas in order to avoid the tension created by another tech giant with major Hollywood ties; Netflix. Netflix typically asks theater owners to debut its movies at the same time they’re made available for streaming, an approach that limits its ability to debut movies in major cinemas, which conventionally insist that movies don’t become available online for about three months after debuting in theaters. The Journal reports talks between theater houses and Netflix about showing some of the latter’s movies have fallen after both parties failed to reach an agreement on exclusivity.

Reese Witherspoon (left) and Jennifer Aniston (on stage at the Steve Jobs Theater) talk about AppleTV+ at a recent Apple event

image: Apple

Apple’s reported approach stand similar to that of another tech giant, Amazon, which has released some of its movies first in theaters before making them available for streaming. According to the Journal, Apple is more interested in the prestige and brand-building that can come with a flashy theatrical debut rather than seeing such move as a money-maker. AppleTV+ will become available on the 1st of November, and will feature productions from top Hollywood figures, including Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and J.J. Abrams [as aforementioned] and the likes of Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon, Octavia Spencer, Jason Momoa, M. Night Shyamalan, Jon M. Chu and more.

Exclusive productions from such figures could deepen the appeal of the new streaming service, which will be available in over 100 countries when it launches. AppleTV+ will cost $5 per month when it launches, a much lesser amount compared to similar streaming services.

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