Apple Signs Ex-HBO Chief to Produce Shows for Apple TV+

The former HBO chairman and CEO signed a five-year deal to produce programming exclusively for Apple's new streaming service.

Richard Plepler, a longtime HBO executive who served as CEO and chairman of the network until February 2019, will contribute to Apple TV+ as a producer. 

Plepler's production company, Eden Productions, signed a five-year deal to produce content exclusively for Apple TV+, which launched in November 2019 to mixed reviews. Apple has not released subscriber numbers for the service, which costs $4.99 a month.  Eden Productions will produce television series, documentaries, and films for Apple's streaming service.

Plepler exited HBO a few months after its parent company, WarnerMedia, was acquired by AT&T  (T) - Get Report, and told the NYTimes that part of the appeal of an exclusive deal with Apple TV+ was that the service is "embryonic" enough to make an impact.

HBO is introducing a service of its own in May, a $14.99 per month offering anchored in current and past HBO programming, plus original content and content from other AT&T-owned brands.

Apple shares were up 2% on Thursday to $299.60.