By Chris Morris
March 26, 2018

Apple has set the date it will go to war with Netflix.

The tech company, which has recently dramatically increased its investment in original programming, is targeting the first half of next year to roll out the content — sometime between March and summer 2019.

It’s a high stakes battle. Among the stars Apple has recruited with its $285 billion in cash on hand are Reese Witherspoon and Jennifer Aniston, who will co-star in a series about a morning TV show. Steven Spielberg is also working with the company, rebooting his “Amazing Stories” show.

The company reportedly plans to spend $1 billion initially on originally programming.

In total, Apple has so far put together 12 new shows for its Apple Worldwide Video division. Former Sony executives Zack Van Amburg and Jamie Erlicht are in charge of the unit, and they have been aggressively hiring from rivals.

The company, so far, has not shared how it plans to distribute the shows (via iTunes or a streaming service on its TV app, for instance), nor how it plans to monetize them.

The company has its work cut out for it. Netflix says it plans to spend $8 billion on original content this year. The company’s successful push into original programming has resulted in it signing up more U.S. subscribers than country’s largest cable companies combined.

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