Apple has recruited three former Sony Pictures Television executives to join its burgeoning TV division.
Kim Rozenfeld, former head of current programming at Sony TV, will now serve as Apple’s future head of current and the lead executive on documentary series development. This will reunite Rozenfield with former bosses Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht, who left Sony in June to oversee video content at Apple
Meanwhile, Max Aronson and Ali Woodruff, also formerly of Sony, are joining Apple as development executive and will report directly to Van Amburg and Erlicht. Aronson had previously served as VP of drama development at Sony Pictures TV, and Woodruff as director, creative affairs. Finally, former WGN America head of publicity Rita Cooper Lee will be heading up communications Apple’s new video content unit.
So far, Apple’s TV content initiative is rather nascent, with the company having dabbled in some series programming this year on its Apple Music premium streaming service. The Planet of the Apps reality show, which features app developers pitching their ideas to a panel of celebrities, originally premiered in early June. Following that, Carpool Karaoke: The Series rolled out to subscribers in early August, a full-length version of the celebrities-singing-in-the-car segment from The Late, Late Show with James Corden.
This news follows a September 6th report that Apple is one of the major companies vying for the film distribution rights to the James Bond franchise. According to The Hollywood Reporter, sources said Van Amburg and Erlicht in particular are the two figures at Apple who are now spearheading the initiative to secure the Bond rights.
It’s believed that Apple wants to mine the franchise’s larger potential by exploring Bond in TV and other media, given that the popular British spy is predominantly only seen in films. Amazon was another tech giant said to be seeking the rights as well.