The man who oversaw the creation of some of HBO’s most highly praised “prestige TV” could soon be making shows for Apple TV+, according to a new report from The Wall Street Journal. Richard Plepler, who was HBO’s chairman and CEO up until he parted ways with the company last February following its acquisition by AT&T, is nearing an exclusive production deal with Apple’s new original content streaming service, the report says.
Plepler, who spent almost 30 years at HBO, including six as its CEO during which the media company aired some of its biggest hits, including “Game of Thrones,” would definitely bring some big-name industry influence to Apple’s efforts. Not that Apple TV+ lacks for that in its early offing, either: The premiere slate of original shows include Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon-led “The Morning Show,” and a show centerd around Oprah’s Book Club, just to name a couple of examples.
The deal, which isn’t yet final but might be signed officially “within the next few weeks,” per the report, would be between Apple and Plepler’s RLP & Co., a production company he established after leaving HBO. There’s nothing yet to indicate what kind of projects he’d be working on for Apple TV+, but it’s a logical target for Apple’s new original content enterprise to pursue, given that its focus thus far appears to be on fewer, big-budget, high-profile projects, but critical reception hasn’t been up to par with the kind of TV that HBO has a track record of producing.