Apple is developing an ‘Are You Sleeping’ show starring Octavia Spencer

Apple is developing a new original drama series entitled Are You Sleeping, starring Octavia Spencer, reports Variety. Created and written by Nichelle Tramble Spellman, the series will be produced by Reese Witherspoon’s Hello Sunshine and Chernin Ent/Endeavor Content.

The series is based on Kathleen Barber’s novel of the same name, which gives a glimpse into the obsession with true crime podcasts and “challenges its viewers to consider the consequences when the pursuit of justice is placed on a public stage.” Sarah Koenig, the creator and producer behind true crime podcast Serial, will consult on the series.

Are You Sleeping is the second project Apple has teamed with Witherspoon and Hello Sunshine on so far. The company has committed to a dramatic series starring Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston. The show will explore the behind-the-scenes action of daily morning shows and its players.

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Apple is also planning a reboot of Steven Spielberg’s Amazing Stories as one of its first series in its foray into original programming under Jamie Erlicht & Zack Van Amburg, heads of the newly formed worldwide video programming division. Created by Spielberg, Amazing Stories was a fantasy, horror, and science fiction television anthology series featuring an all-star roster of guest stars that originally ran on NBC from 1985 to 1987. The series was nominated for 12 Emmy Awards and won five. 

The Cupertino, California-based company has set a budget of roughly $1 billion to procure and produce original content over the next year, according to the Wall Street Journal, and could acquire and produce as many as 10 television shows.

Spencer is an American actress and author. She made her film debut in the 1996 drama film A Time to Kill. Her breakthrough came in 2011, when she starred as Minny Jackson in the period drama film The Help, for which she won the Academy Award, Golden Globe, SAG, BAFTA, and Critics' Choice Movie Award for Best Supporting Actress. She has also starred in the films Fruitville Station, Hidden Figures, The Shack, and The Shape of Water, among others.