Apple's star-studded 'The Morning Show' joins #MeToo conversation

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By Alicia Powell

LOS ANGELES, Oct 18 (Reuters) - Apple Inc is jumping into the streaming video wars with a series that explores accusations of sexual misconduct at a fictional morning television news show, a story that tackles issues brought to life over the past two years of the #MeToo movement.

"The Morning Show" starring Jennifer Aniston, Reese Witherspoon and Steve Carell is one of eight original shows that will be available starting Nov. 1 through Apple TV+, a new subscription video service.

Aniston, in her first TV role since rising to fame on "Friends," plays Alex Levy, a veteran journalist who learns her male co-anchor (Carell) has been fired amid accusations of sexual harassment.

It echoes the real-life cases of powerful men who lost their jobs following misconduct allegations against producer Harvey Weinstein, who denies any non-consensual sex.

"Jumping into a cultural conversation is so rich," Witherspoon said in an interview with Reuters. "Television and movies help us synthesize the things we're seeing on TV, and give us a human perspective."

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Witherspoon and Aniston both served as executive producers on the 10-episode series. Witherspoon said the series was put together by a "very gender-balanced creative team."

"The Morning Show" also explores issues of ageism and ethics in the news business. Witherspoon portrays a younger reporter navigating the world of TV journalism as the older Aniston is worrying about whether she will be dropped from her anchor job.

"It's a lot about lies people tell themselves when they wake up in the morning," writer and executive producer Kerry Ehrin said. (Reporting by Alicia Powell; Writing by Lisa Richwine; Editing by Howard Goller)

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