Rap music's Dr Dre making Apple's first original TV show: Report

Dr Dre (left) and music mogul Jimmy Iovine in a 2011 file photo.
Dr Dre (left) and music mogul Jimmy Iovine in a 2011 file photo.PHOTO: KEVIN MAZUR

SAN FRANCISCO (AFP) - Rap music legend Dr Dre is starring in Apple's first original television show, according to a story published on Friday in the Hollywood Reporter.

The co-founder of Beats Music, which Apple bought nearly two years ago in a deal valued at US$3 billion, will star in and produce Vital Signs, a six-episode series the report described as a semi-autobiographical "dark drama with no shortage of violence and sex".

Apple is financially backing the series, but it remained unclear what roles Apple Music, Apple TV, the iTunes stores and the California company's other resources would play when it comes to digitally delivering the show, according to the report.

Apple did not reply to an AFP request for comment.

Netflix and Amazon have found success with original television programming, but this would be the first time Apple raises the curtain on a show of its own making.

Apple in mid-2014 closed its deal for Beats, the high-end audio equipment and streaming music service.

Apple's biggest-ever acquisition also brought onboard the talent of Beats brains and co-founders Dr Dre and Jimmy Iovine.

Iovine, a producer for U2, Dire Straits, Stevie Nicks, Tom Petty and The Heartbreakers, and Patti Smith, is seen by some as a visionary for recognising the trend towards online streaming and subscriptions.

The television series project evidently originated with Dr Dre, who conceived the idea and pitched it directly to partner Iovine, the Reporter said, citing unnamed sources.