Apple Goes Deeper Into La La Land With Damien Chazelle Project


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Damien Chazelle, the Oscar-winning writer and director of “La La Land,” shown here on the set of that film with its star, Emma Stone, will make a series for Apple.

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Dale Robinette/Lionsgate

Apple has taken another step toward becoming a power in the entertainment business by scooping up the rights for a TV project from Damien Chazelle, the Oscar-winning writer and director of “La La Land,” the unlikely critical and box office hit from 2016.

The tech giant announced the new series on Thursday. It marks the latest television entry from Mr. Chazelle, who signed a deal with Netflix in September to make “The Eddy,” an eight-episode musical series set in Paris.

Apple said that Mr. Chazelle would direct and write each episode of the new series’ first season. His involvement in the Netflix show has him directing only its first two episodes.

Another difference from the Netflix deal: Apple is being mum on the details.

How many episodes will it be?

Where will it take place?

What’s it about?

Apple would not answer any of those questions.

In a very short period of time, with competition so intense, TV networks have begun committing tens of millions of dollars to projects without so much as seeing a script. Rarer still is an announcement of a coming series without a public disclosure of what was purchased.

For the mysterious new assignment, Mr. Chazelle will reunite with the producers Jordan Horowitz and Fred Berger, both of whom worked on “La La Land.” MRC, which produced “House of Cards,” is the studio behind the show. Show business fans will recall Mr. Horowitz as the man who stood on the Academy Awards stage to claim the Oscar for best picture after Warren Beatty and Faye Dunaway had mistakenly announced “La La Land” as the winner. After realizing the error, Mr. Horowitz revealed that “Moonlight” was the true winner and called the rival film’s team to the stage.

The untitled Chazelle project is the eighth one to be made public by Apple. The Cupertino, Calif., company entered the streaming wars last year when it announced that it would spend more than $1 billion on a slate of original programming.

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