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With Apple set to unveil its long-rumoured video streaming service next Monday, it now appears that the company has already completed actual filming on several of its original content projects, although with post-production work remaining to be done, it seems that we still won’t be seeing these shows debut until later this year.
A new report from The New York Times is basically confirming earlier reports that Apple’s original content won’t be coming right away, but goes farther by actually identifying those shows most likely to debut as part of Apple’s first wave of shows. While most of the shows listed by the Times are already known, this marks the first time we’ve seen even a glimpse of how Apple’s production schedules are actually working out.
The Shows That Are Almost Ready
Not surprisingly, since it’s one of the first content deals Apple signed, the morning show drama with Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston is expected to be at the front of the lineup. The Times also describes this as “Apple’s splashiest project,” and it’s certainly a high-profile one both because of its early acquisition and the star talent behind it, which also includes Steve Carell, Billy Crudup, and Mark Duplass. In fact, Apple was quick to commit to at least two seasons before it ever saw a script, and although it seems that producers have yet to decide on a title for the series, shooting for the first season is reportedly almost done.
Apple’s other early project, the reboot of Steven Spielberg’s Amazing Stories, is also expected to finish shooting very soon, and could be ready in time for release later this year. This particular production ran into a few hurdles early on, and became a poster child for Apple’s decision to avoid risqué content after the original producers came up with a vision that was too dark for even Spielberg himself. The project got back on track after Edward Kitsis and Adam Horowitz of Once Upon a Time fame took over.
Filming has already come to an end on at least five other projects, however, including Are You Sleeping, a new crime drama that will feature Octavia Spencer; Dickinson, the comedy on the life of poet Emily Dickson starring Hailee Steinfeld and Jane Krakowski; and the Ronald D. Moore sci-fi series For All Mankind. The comedy from the duo behind It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and the mysterious new thriller by M. Night Shyamalan are also said to be done filming, although very little else is yet known about either of these; the story for the Shyamalan thriller in particular is being kept a secret, for obvious reasons.
The Next Ones in Apple’s Lineup
The Times also notes four other shows that Apple is working on that should be finished in the next few months. While these could make the cut for a 2019 release, they could also just as easily be held back for next year. The fantasy epic See, starring Jason Momoa and Alfre Woodard, tells the story of what would happen to humanity in a world where everyone suddenly became blind. The Little America anthology series is also currently being shot, and focuses on stories of immigrants coming to the United States.
The animated “cartoon musical” Central Park, from the creator of Bob’s Burgers, and the documentary Home, which takes viewers into lavish, non-celebrity homes, are both expected to be finished in the next few months.
What’s on the More Distant Horizon?
While the above collection of shows are likely to be the first ones out of the gate, Apple is still working on a lot of other shows that we’ve already heard about. Although no timelines have been revealed for these projects, it’s clear that Apple is ready to ensure that it will have a strong lineup of new content each year.
These include an incredibly ambitious project based on Isaac Asimov’s Foundation sci-fi trilogy, a new show based on the childhood and rise of NBA star Kevin Durant, a drama miniseries to be directed by J.J. Abrams that will star Jennifer Garner, a TV film adaptation of the novel Shantaram which will also be directed by Abrams, a comedy TV series starring Kristin Wiig, a Damien-Chazelle drama, and most recently a CIA drama starring Brie Larson. There’s also the question of whatever Apple is up to with its multi-year deal with Oprah Winfrey, and the slate of children’s shows it’s working on with Sesame Workshop. While some of these deals have just been signed and therefore likely aren’t even yet out of the preliminary stages, others have been in the works for a while, but may simply require a lot more time to be done properly. Either way, we’re confident that there’s going to be no shortage of original content coming out of Apple over the next couple of years.
By all reports, Apple will be taking the wraps off its new streaming service at its event next Monday, which is also expected to include a star-studded guest list of Hollywood actors, writers, and directors that are involved in some of Apple’s projects. While most sources agree that Apple won’t actually begin airing any new content until later this year — a typical TV fall release seems likely — it’s not yet certain whether the company will at least preview some of the content that’s coming, but it seems likely we’ll at least see a few trailers so that Apple can begin promoting the new shows in advance of their release.