In what can only be described as a shocking deal, the WWII battleship drama Greyhound written by and starring none other than Tom Hanks will become the biggest feature film commitment made by Apple to premiere on Apple TV+. The film was originally scheduled on the Sony Pictures theatrical calendar for Father’s Day weekend in wide release.
It is the latest in a growing indication that Apple is making its move, and becoming as aggressive as any streamer or studio in auctions for the acquisition of films and TV projects.
Hanks will test the waters in putting out one of his star-vehicle films direct to a streamer for the first time with a premiere in more than 100 countries, and it is all because of the coronavirus pandemic and how it has wrecked studio theatrical release calendars this year. Hanks already had been indelibly linked to the pandemic when, on the set of the Baz Luhrmann-directed Elvis Presley movie for Warner Bros in Australia, he became the first major movie star to test positive.
Apple has not set a date to release yet, but the expectation is it will be soon… It was going to be a major theatrical release for Sony — first slotted for May 8 but then moved into Father’s Day weekend June 19, until the pandemic washed out every studio’s plans and shuttered movie theaters around the world.
That’s when the decision was made to alter course. The picture quietly was shopped in stealthy fashion, and it became a bidding battle between the big streamers. I’m told a deal closed in the $70 million range…
Below is the official trailer for Tom Hanks’ Greyhound:
MacDailyNews Take: And, just like that, Apple TV+ splashes all over the map!
Those who can wrap their heads around Apple’s massive cash mountain and the company’s unparalleled ability to generate cash can clearly see who the winner will be. The most talented producers, writers, directors, editors, actors, etc. are attracted to exactly what Apple has and makes in vast abundance: Cash. The king.
Like bears to honey, it’s happening already. — MacDailyNews, January 3, 2018