American filmmaker Steven Spielberg's production division Amblin Television, American actor and filmmaker Tom Hanks, and film and television producer Gary Goetzman’s production Playtone have made a deal with Apple for a series based on the Donald L. Miller book Masters of the Air, reported US media. The series will reportedly be a follow-up to their Emmy-winning World War II HBO miniseries Band of Brothers and The Pacific. Masters of the Air tells the story of the American bomber boys in WWII who brought the war to Hitler’s doorstep. This marks the first greenlit with Apple TV+ which is going to join the brigade of online streaming platforms like Netflix and Amazon. As per reports, the miniseries will be more than eight hours in length, and that it will cost well north of $200 million to produce.
US media states that Spielberg, Hanks, and Goetzman will be the executive producers in the series. Amblin Television’s Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey will co-executive produce, along with Steven Shareshian of Playtone, added the reports. Band of Brothers alumnus John Orloff, who is also a co-executive producer as is another Band of Brothers alum, Graham Yost is writing the script for the series. The trio originally developed Masters of the Air at HBO. They reportedly saw it as the final chapter in a trilogy, following Band of Brothers and The Pacific which garnered a total of 43 Emmy nominations and 14 Emmy wins including Outstanding Limited Series for both of them.
As HBO opted out of the WWII miniseries, it finally fell in Apple TV. This is a solid start for Apple who is trying to build its portfolio amongst its competitors in the market. The technology giant is also better situated for the huge financial commitment, cited experts to the media. Masters of the Air is also the second commitment of Apple after its multi-year commitment to be the exclusive TV home of Oscar-winning Roma and Gravity director Alfonso Cuarón. Apart from this, it will also be the second project for Spielberg after the anthology series Amazing Stories. The venture will join Apple’s growing offering of sweeping international drama series including Pachinko and Shantaram.
(with agency inputs)