Bad Robot Deal

J.J. Abrams can do pretty much whatever he wants in Hollywood at this point. And what he really wants is to find a new home for his Bad Robot production company. Studios far and wide have been courting Abrams as part of a big megadeal that would enable Abrams and Bad Robot to make even more movies, TV shows, games, and more. According to a new report, two frontrunners have emerged for the deal.

Deadline is reporting that WarnerMedia and Apple have emerged as the frontrunners as the new home of Bad Robot. Per their story:

While the situation remains fluid and reps for Abrams denied comment, word is that WarnerMedia on the traditional media side and Apple on the tech side have emerged as strong possibilities, with some indications that WarnerMedia may have the edge over the Silicon Valley giant. However, as far as we know, none of four studios vying for Abrams’ services has been informed that they are no longer in contention.

Comcast/NBCUniversal and Sony have also been in talks with Abrams, but it looks like Warners and Apple have pulled to the front. The most interesting element of this is that Disney is nowhere to be seen. I thought for sure the House of Mouse would be the winners here – Abrams has a relationship with them through Star Wars, and, as we all know, Disney owns pretty much everything at this point. I guess they’ll have to be content with what they have for now.

Here’s the lowdown on the deal’s potential, as previously reported by Variety:

Abrams’ ambitions are vast and that the prolific producer, writer, and director…is on the hunt for the kind of super nova-sized deal that would encompass films, television series, digital content, music, games, consumer products, and theme park opportunities. Abrams also wants a specific number of guaranteed slots on a studio’s slate of movies.

So who will win – Apple or Warners? WarnerMedia already has a relationship with Abrams, with several Abrams-produced shows – including Westworld – set up there. But Abrams and Bad Robot also have some new shows headed to Apple, including the Sara Bareilles show Little Voice. The bottom line is that everyone wants to work with J.J. Abrams, and throw money at him. Time will eventually tell who comes out ahead. I’m betting WarnerMedia will come out ahead in the end, simply because they have a proven track record, and the reaction to Apple’s upcoming streaming service has been rather muted, to say the least.

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