Apple’s latest hire to help in its push for original video content is BBC executive Jay Hunt, which is notable as it is the company’s first high-profile broadcasting executive hire outside of the US, Financial Times reports. That news comes today as a separate report details Apple’s reportedly not-so-edgy approach as it shops for content…
Ms Hunt was most recently chief creative officer at Channel 4, during a time when it axed Big Brother, developed Gogglebox and Black Mirror, poached the Great British Bake Off from the BBC, and twice won Channel of the Year at the Edinburgh International Television Festival. Once seen as a frontrunner to become Channel 4’s next chief executive, she spent almost seven years at the British broadcaster, before leaving in September.
The FT report adds that Hunt will start at Apple officially in January and be part of a team that will lead a $1B budget for original content video for the next 12 months.
And in a separate report today from Bloomberg, we get a taste of what Apple is looking for when shopping for new TV shows and movies with reports from those involved in talks claiming Apple will stay away from edgy content as first. That means only shows that are suitable to be played at an Apple Store and thus no violence or nudity:
…Apple isn’t interested in the types of shows that become hits on HBO or Netflix, like Game of Thrones—at least not yet. The company plans to release the first few projects to everyone with an Apple device, potentially via its TV app, and top executives don’t want kids catching a stray nipple. Every show must be suitable for an Apple Store. Instead of the nudity, raw language, and violence that have become staples of many TV shows on cable or streaming services, Apple wants comedies and emotional dramas with broad appeal, such as the NBC hit This Is Us, and family shows like Amazing Stories. People pitching edgier fare, such as an eight-part program produced by Gravity filmmaker Alfonso Cuarón and starring Casey Affleck, have been told as much.
That somewhat goes against an earlier report that claimed Apple was looking for Breaking Bad-type talent and shopping for a Game of Thrones-style drama.
The latest news on Apple’s behind the scenes original video content efforts came earlier this month when confirmation arrived that Apple has made a deal with Steven Speilberg for a remake of 1980s sci-fi/fantasy series Amazing Stories. That report came a few months after news that the company picked up two top Sony Television executives to reportedly lead its original content production followed by four more veteran video executives to join its TV unit last month.