Apple TV+ Chiefs Say November 1 Launch is Just the ‘Starting Line’

A new profile of Apple TV+ bosses Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg highlights the streaming service’s development process.

In a new interview with Variety, the Apple TV+ chiefs give an overview of the process of building Apple’s bold video venture from scratch.

“This has been more than two years in the making,” Van Amburg says. “We’ve all been working so hard to do the best work of our lives. We’re anxious to begin to share that.”

Erlicht explains that in order to build a successful and effective streaming service for Apple, they had to get themselves well-acquainted with the Cupertino company and all its various division heads.

“We spent a lot of time at Cupertino getting to know all of the various division heads who were going to be critical to our success,” Erlicht says. “We spent a good chunk of [the first] few months flying up to Cupertino multiple times a week, figuring out how what we’re doing on the entertainment side fit in with everything else at Apple. We knew we needed to make [Apple TV Plus] feel seamless for the company.”

While the first slate of Apple TV+ shows would seem to have little in common — they range from a teen comedy to a sci-fi epic — the company’s top entertainment programming execs say they are all about relationships.

“The guiding word is ‘humanity,'” Van Amburg says about Apple TV+’s brand. “All of our shows have something to say about the relationships we have with each other and with the world. The common denominator of all the creative people we’ve gotten into business with is ‘Wow, they really know what they want to say with this show, and they’re desperate to say it.'”

The two TV execs are certainly familiar with high-stakes launches and creative fliers, but this time Erlicht and Van Amburg explain that they’ve had to rely more on their instincts on what makes great TV.

“There’s no piece of data on Nov. 2 that in any way, shape or form can change the course of what we’ve been doing,” Erlicht says. “What I’m most excited about is that the world is going to be able to see what we’ve been doing. And they’re going to see a user interface that will change the way the consumer watches video. It’s a real experience.”

And while the two have been working over two years on Apple TV+, they say that the journey is just beginning for themselves and the company’s streaming service.

“The natural inclination is to feel that Nov. 1 is the finish line,” Van Amburg says. “But actually, Nov. 1 is the starting line.”

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