Today, the tech giant announced that they have inked the former talk-show icon to an all-encompassing deal for her to develop projects across a wide array of their multimedia platforms, including of course television shows of the scripted / non-scripted variety. This deal will not be exclusive, which means that Oprah is going to continue to have opportunities to develop some content with a number of other brands, including of course her network in OWN.
To go along with that, Oprah is also going to retain the rights to whatever she develops under her Harpo Films banner, which is a move that allows her to keep ownership — a very important move for the long-term future of whatever it is that she helps to create.
So why would Apple go through with this without exclusivity or ownership? The simplest answer is that they are currently fighting hard to obtain more original content that you cannot get anywhere else. They’ve been in the market for some big producers, much as Netflix has been in inking big deals for both Shonda Rhimes and Ryan Murphy. Getting Oprah on board is a huge leap forward for them, given that there really are few people in the industry who have anywhere near the same sort of clout.
Personally, we love the deal for both parties since it gives each one of them something rather big. For Apple, it enables them a chance to have a top-tier content creator who has a big following. For Oprah, meanwhile, she gets a different sort of audience than the one that she has had previously. Obviously, we’ll wait and see precisely what sort of great programming she is able to come up with here.
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