Earlier this year, Apple announced it was working on an unscripted reality TV show about app developers. Now, that show has a name (with a pretty good pun): Planet of the Apps. An open casting call launched this week is asking for "100 of the world’s most talented app creators," with the show's creators requesting that would-be participants send in information about their prospective app as well as a one-minute video profile of themselves and their team.
We don't yet know the exact format of the show, but given it's a competition about apps, it can't hold too many surprises. Think Shark Tank with fewer sharks and more viable product pitches. Or an episode of The Bachelor, where instead of wooing an eligible young beefcake, contestants will compete to impress Eddy Cue. (Disclaimer: there's no indication that Cue is going to appear on the show, and whether or not he can be deemed a 'beefcake' is entirely a matter of taste.)
Contestants are competing for mentorship, VC funding, and free marketing
Planet of the Apps' website bills it as more than just a show, but also "a launch pad and accelerator for exceptional developers." Contestants will be competing for mentorship from "some of the world’s best experts in tech and entertainment," says the site, as well as funding from "top-tier VCs investing up to $10 million" and marketing in the form of "featured placement in the App Store." All that is certainly worth fighting for.
In a press statement (via 9to5Mac), the co-CEOs of Propagate, the production company co-producing the show, said: "Over 2 million apps are available on the App Store, with new apps published every day. Planet of the Apps will give app creators the chance to break through and share their ideas with the world. This is an exciting format that taps into what is driving culture today. We can’t wait to see the groundbreaking ideas accepted for the show grow into viable businesses."
It's not clear when the show will air, but the casting call stipulates that contestants have a functioning app in beta by October 21st. Filming is expected to begin later this year in Los Angeles and run through early 2017, so don't expect to see any trailers for a while. The show will reportedly be available through Apple's own platforms (so, Apple TV, iTunes, etc), but there's no word on whether Planet of the Apps will be picked up by traditional TV or cable networks, or from streaming services like Netflix. Applications for would-be contestants end August 26th.