What do Jennifer Aniston, Oprah Winfrey, and J.J. Abrams Have in Common?
When creating a new platform in the current saturated streaming market, it helps to have a television and film megastar, talk show legend/network owner, and today’s hottest director on board. Jennifer Aniston, Oprah Winfrey, and J.J. Abrams are just a few of Hollywood’s heavy hitters bringing shows to the upcoming Apple TV+ scheduled to launch this fall, according to The Verge. Here are some of the projects these three powerhouses are spearheading for the streaming service.
Jennifer Aniston – Partnering with Reese Witherspoon
Teaming up with Reese Witherspoon as executive producer and cast member, Jennifer Aniston stars in The Morning Show, a fictional program centered around a morning show news program – think Good Morning America behind the scenes. The actors describe the show as “tackling the dynamics between men and women in television,” according to Mashable. The program also stars Steve Carell, Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Billy Crudup, Nestor Carbonell, and Mark Duplass, as reported by Vulture. The article went on to report that the series is inspired by Brian Stelter’s book Top of the Morning, based on the Today Show.
“We engage in conversation[s] people are a little too afraid to have unless they’re behind closed doors,” Aniston told Refinery 29.
Aniston is reportedly “thrilled” Carrell has joined the series, according to Refinery 29, saying, “Honestly, you can’t have an honest look at complex relationships between men and women with just women.”
Oprah Winfrey – Multiple projects in the works
Last year, Apple announced “a unique, multi-year content partnership with Oprah Winfrey, the esteemed producer, actress, talk show host, philanthropist and CEO of OWN. Together, Winfrey and Apple will create original programs that embrace her incomparable ability to connect with audiences around the world. Winfrey’s projects will be released as part of a lineup of original content from Apple.”
“There has never been a moment quite like this one,” Winfrey said, according to Deadline. “We have this unique opportunity to rise to our best selves in how we use and choose to use both our technology and our humanity.”
According to Techcrunch, two of those projects will be documentaries. Toxic Labor will examine the effects of sexual harassment in the workplace. Winfrey is also collaborating with Britain’s Prince Harry on a multi-part documentary about mental health, as reported by CNN. “Our hope is that it will have an impact on reducing the stigma and allowing people to know that they are not alone, allowing people to speak up about it and being able to identify it for themselves and in their friends,” Winfrey said.
Techcrunch reported that Winfrey is also working on a new version of her book club with Apple, where she called it “the biggest, most vibrant, the most stimulating book club on the planet.” Winfrey is hoping to stream her interviews with authors to Apple stores and devices around the world. “I want to literally convene a meeting of the minds, connecting us through books,” Winfrey said.
J.J. Abrams – Reuniting with Jennifer Garner
Hollywood’s hottest director J.J. Abrams is joining forces once again with Jennifer Garner. The two collaborated on the ABC show Alias, according to Variety, which ran from 2001 to 2006.
Garner will star in the drama My Glory Was I Had Such Friends, based on the 2017 memoir by Amy Silverstein that explores the power of friendship through a group of women who supported Silverstein as she waited for a second heart transplant, as stated by Hollywood Reporter. Garner will also co-executive produce along with Abrams. This is the first collaboration between Abrams and Garner since Alias.
Abrams has a second series with Apple entitled Little Voice, a 10-episode half-hour dramedy starring singer Sara Bareilles. Abrams’ also just directed Star Wars: Episode IX due out in December of this year.