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Apple is reportedly in “advanced talks” to purchase the rights for an Israeli drama series described as both “mature” and “violent.”
The Cupertino tech giant is reportedly outbidding other companies like Showtime, FX and Amazon to acquire the rights to adapt the TV series — “Nevelot,” or “Bastards” — for the U.S., according to several sources cited by CNBC.
“Bastards” is described as a show that revolves around two military veterans who go on a youth-focused killing spree because, as CNBC’s Michelle Castillo writes, “they believe today’s kids don’t understand the sacrifices of their generations.”
Reportedly, Richard Gere is in talks to star in the U.S. adaptation. Additionally, the show is being written and created by Howard Gordon and Warren Leight, known for show-running critically acclaimed programs “Homeland” and “Law and Order: SVU,” respectively.
Of course, nothing is finalized quite yet. All sides are still in the talks about various details, and if certain agreements can’t be met, the deal could fall through.
It’s worth noting that the very premise of “Bastards,” as well as its adult themes, seems to fly in the face of previous reports about Apple’s content plans.
Back in October 2017, Bloomberg reported that Apple was shying away from creating shows with violent, mature or risqué themes. The goal, apparently, is to create content for a “much wider demographic.”
A Wall Street Journal report from September echoed that sentiment and added that Apple would also avoid content with politics, rude language or violence.
But, as CNBC points out, that may not actually be true. Apple’s originals content heads are “working overtime to dispel the myth that Apple is interested only in family-friendly material.” As the publication puts it, Apple is on the hunt for its own version of “Breaking Bad.”
The report also reveals other tidbits about Apple’s original content plans.
For example, Apple is looking at “unusual formats” that won’t fit in the traditional 30- or 60-minute TV time slots. Additionally, the Cupertino tech giant is said to be experimenting with advanced interactive and immersive content.
Apple currently has a growing slate of original TV programs, which it is rumored to creating for a first-party streaming subscription service. One of those shows, a drama starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon, will be dubbed “Top of the Morning,” CNBC reports.
Further reports hint that the initial wave of original Apple content could be given away for free on the TV app. Similarly, Apple may be developing a combined subscription platform that mixes Apple Music, Apple News with additional magazine content, and original TV programs.
More than that, there are also reports suggesting Apple is looking beyond TV. The company has tapped a couple of independent film studios to produce feature-length content — though it’s not clear if Apple will debut these films in theaters or strictly on their own platforms.