Apple TV+ recently stepped up as the primary financier of Martin Scorsese‘s forthcoming adaptation of Killers of the Flower Moon starring Leonardo DiCaprio and Robert De Niro. It sounds like the collaborative experience between Apple and the legendary filmmaker has been a satisfying one, because Scorsese and his Sikelia Productions banner have just signed a multi-year first look deal for movies and TV shows that the filmmaker would produce and direct for Apple TV+.
The Martin Scorsese Apple TV+ deal was announced in a press release by Apple today. As we reported before, Apple is providing the full budget of Killers of the Flower Moon, estimated to be between $180 million and $200 million, and that will be the first project under this new deal. Paramount Pictures will still release the film theatrically, but this is fully an Apple TV+ production.
Martin Scorsese, one of the greatest filmmakers of all time, has had some trouble getting his movies off the ground in recent years. The Irishman famously had a huge budget due to the visual effect required to de-age Robert De Niro, Al Pacino and Joe Pesci, and Paramount Pictures let that project go to Netflix because they balked at the cost of that project, just like with Killers of the Flower Moon. Studios just don’t like taking risks on expensive dramas these days if they don’t also have the potential for big box office.
But this is Martin Scorsese we’re talking about, a man who has been inspiring filmmakers for decades, and this guy shouldn’t have any problem getting the money he needs to make the movies he wants. Since we probably don’t have too many years left with the 77-year old filmmaker, it’s nice to hear that Apple TV+ is giving him an outlet for producing and directing that will hopefully come without the more debilitating restrictions of the major studio system. Scorsese needs more time behind the camera, and less time in executive offices trying to convince them to give him money.
However, we’re wondering what this means for seeing Scorsese’s movies in theaters. Netflix had some trouble giving The Irishman a wide release in theaters because they didn’t want to adhere to the theatrical window established by movie theaters. But with the recent deal between AMC Theatres and Universal Pictures shaking up the distribution model, maybe Apple will be able to provide Scorsese’s movies with a wide theatrical release before releasing them in the Apple TV+ library.
As of now, no other projects have been mentioned as potential collaborations for Scorsese and Apple, but the filmmaker is constantly producing and developing movies and TV shows, so it’s only a matter of time before we start hearing about them. Coincidentally enough, Apple recently struck a first look deal with Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way production banner. Maybe Scorsese and DiCaprio can get back to working together more often.
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