Apple will release a new blockbuster movie featuring Tom Hanks on its TV+ service after securing the streaming rights for 15 years following a $70m deal with distributor Sony.
Apple has not revealed an official release date for the film, but it is expected to arrive either before or just after Father’s Day, which was the original date for its theatrical release in the US.
The movie is titled Greyhound and features Hanks playing a career officer on a battleship during World War Two.
Hanks, playing a character called George Krause, is tasked with leading his men despite grave doubts about his ability to command the destroyer as it prepares for the Battle of the Atlantic.
Hanks is not a movie star synonymous with releases on streaming services.
In fact, this will be the first time that the 64-year-old has featured in a film that will make its debut on such a service.
The star of Forrest Gump and Cast Away among other blockbusters was recently in the headlines after he contracted the coronavirus while filming another movie in Australia.
Apple is believed to be looking to bolster its fledgling TV+ service after a tepid take-up of subscribers since it launched late last year.
Initially focused on original programming, Apple is now expected to buy the rights to older TV shows and movies to offer a more comprehensive service.
There are only three films currently on TV+ – The Elephant Queen, The Banker and Hala.
It does have a few more in the pipeline, including one titled On the Rocks featuring Bill Murray and Rashida Jones.
CNBC later confirmed that Apple has paid $70m to Sony for the rights to stream Greyhound, with the latter retaining the rights to distribute the film in China, where a cinema release is possible.
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