Friday, July 5, 2019 [Tweets] [Favorites]

Giving Notes on Apple’s TV Shows

Tripp Mickle and Joe Flint:

Tim Cook sat down more than a year ago to watch Apple Inc.’s first scripted drama, “Vital Signs,” and was troubled by what he saw. The show, a dark, semi-biographical tale of hip hop artist Dr. Dre, featured characters doing lines of cocaine, an extended orgy in a mansion and drawn guns.

It’s too violent, Mr. Cook told Apple Music executive Jimmy Iovine, said people familiar with Apple’s entertainment plans. Apple can’t show this.

Alexandra Steigrad and Nicolas Vega:

But as the company’s streaming project gets ready for launch, agents and producers can’t stop griping about how “difficult” Apple is to deal with — citing a “lack of transparency,” “lack of clarity” and “intrusive” executives, including CEO Cook.

One of the biggest complaints involves the many “notes” from Apple executives seeking family-friendly shows, sources said.

“Tim Cook is giving notes and getting involved,” said a producer who has worked with Apple. One of the CEO’s most repeated notes is “don’t be so mean!,” the source said.

[…]

Apple executives in general have been “very involved,” this person said, adding that writers and directors prefer to work without corporate intrusions.

Stuart McGurk (via MacRumors):

“I saw the comments that myself and Tim were writing notes on the scripts and whatever,” says Cue. “There’s never been one note passed from us on scripts, that I can assure you. We leave the folks [alone] who know they’re doing.”

So Cook didn’t give that particular note?

“I can assure you that was 100 per cent false. He didn’t say, ‘Don’t be so mean.’ He didn’t say anything about a script.”

Previously:

Update (2019-09-05): Chance Miller:

The Apple TV+ series was said to focus on two Vietnam veterans and best friends, and would have been Richard Gere’s highest-profile TV role:

Richard Gere was set to star as one of two elderly Vietnam vets and best friends who find their monotonous lives upended when a woman they both loved 50 years ago is killed by a car. Their lifelong regrets and secrets collide with their resentment of today’s self-absorbed millennials and the duo then go on a shooting spree.

Howard Gordon and Warren Leight collaborated on two scripts for “Bastards,” but Apple reportedly sent notes with concerns about the “show’s tone of vigilante justice.” According to the report, Gordon did not want to focus on the friendship between the two characters, but rather wanted to emphasize the “darker elements of the series.” Apple, however, wanted to ensure the “series was focused on the heart and emotion of the central friendship.”

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