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Is Apple Working on Dr. Dre’s 'Eyes Wide Shut'?

The six-episode show is said to be called "Vital Signs."

Desiree Navarro / Getty

When Apple bought Beats in 2014 and launched Apple Music in 2015, a key part of its strategy was to build hype with A-list celebrities and musicians like Dr. Dre, Drake and The Weeknd.

Apple doesn’t appear to be letting go of its famous friends anytime soon. The Hollywood Reporter says that Apple is now filming a six-episode TV show that is executive produced by and stars Dr. Dre. The tentative title is “Vital Signs.”

“Vital Signs” will likely be distributed by Apple Music, but it makes sense that Apple TV would be involved in some way. The Hollywood Reporter describes it as “semi-autobiographical” and that “each episode [focuses] on a different emotion and how Dre’s character deals with it.” No word on whether this includes the multiple times he physically assaulted women.

The tone of the show is said to be dark and surreal, and an episode filmed earlier this week reportedly included an “extended orgy scene.” The rapper and N.W.A. co-founder’s wife was evidently on the set.

Last year, Re/code reported that Apple was talking with TV networks about launching its own Web TV service, but Cupertino later walked away from those discussions after the negotiations stalled. In August, Variety reported that Apple was looking into original TV programming of its own, and at one point we know Apple was talking with Bill Simmons about including him in those efforts.

Here’s the thing we really don’t know: What is Apple thinking?

Or, more politely: Apple has already funded some original content, but so far it has all been clearly related to marketing for Apple Music. Drake’s “Hotline Bling” video, for instance. And Taylor Swift’s concert film. And that sort of makes sense.

But while Dr. Dre is technically a recording artist — he debuted a new album on Apple Music late last year, in case you missed it — it’s hard to see how a six-episode mini-series about him qualifies as promo material for Apple Music. On the other hand, it doesn’t seem to be a calling card project for a big original content push, a la Netflix’s “House of Cards.”

So maybe this is a … vanity project for Dre? That’s sort of what the Hollywood Reporter suggests, without quite saying it: “This project is said to have originated with Dre, who conceived the idea and pitched it directly to partner Jimmy Iovine.”

Anyway, we’re definitely going to watch it, if and when it comes out.

Apple declined to comment for this story.

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