Apple is willing to spend the big bucks on its upcoming Apple TV+ streaming service to compete with the likes of Netflix and Amazon.
The series reportedly cost upwards of $15 million USD per episode, making it one of the most expensive TV series of all time, up in the same ranks as Game of Thrones. The latter show had a similar budget for its final season, but that was after eight seasons and after the series had developed a massive following. It’s also about the same amount of moolah Disney is spending per episode on its upcoming flagship Disney+ Star Wars spin-off series The Mandalorian.
“In the case of Apple‘s ‘See,’ the cost has neared $15 million for each roughly 60-minute episode, according to a person familiar with the matter,” reads the report. “That is more than the cost of a typical independent feature film.”
Back when it first announced its original TV ambitions, Game of Thrones was apparently the model for the kind of “scope” Apple hoped to achieve. In total, Apple’s budget for original TV shows was said to “blow past” $1 billion USD.
“With massive casts, exotic filming locations and copious special effects, budgets have ballooned to amounts once considered unfathomable for a TV show,” reads the report. “One driving factor, executives say, is that high-profile TV shows are offered up next to theatrical films available to stream on the same service, so original programming can’t risk looking like B-material next to the movies.”
See is created by Peaky Blinders showrunner Steven Knight and stars Momoa as the lead character “Baba Voss.” Hera Hilmar, Christian Camargo, Shalyn Ferdinand, and Lauren Glazier will also feature in the show.
See‘s plot takes place in a post-apocalyptic world where Earth has been devastated by a deadly virus, where the few million people who survived emerged blind. The show is set centuries later when the human race has lived for so long without sight that it is not clear to humanity whether the sense ever existed.
Apple TV+ is launching sometime this fall, but it’s still not clear if See will be available to stream immediately or sometime after.