This story has been updated.
The video sharing website has canceled plans for a paid high-end video streaming service with Hollywood production-level comedies and dramas, Bloomberg reports. The Google-owned company has reportedly stopped accepting pitches for such shows and canceled at least two scripted shows already in the pipeline.
While sources did not state an exact reason for YouTube’s withdrawal from its Hollywood ambitions, the high cost of producing original content needed to convince people to subscribe to a paid-for video service—running into the billions of dollars—was too much considering just how much content would be needed for YouTube to have a realistic chance of taking on the video streaming service heavyweights, Netflix and Amazon.
News of YouTube’s abandonment of its high-end originals also comes just hours before Apple is set to introduce their own video streaming service. Apple is expected to announce that its service will include over 20 original shows at launch as well as the ability to subscribe to premium channels to access content from HBO and Showtime.
UPDATE: YouTube reached out to Fast Company to deny Bloomberg’s report, pointing to its full and robust slate that includes several scripted projects in development. The Google subsidiary says it is steadily building its SVOD business, while also developing new series and formats that will appeal to a global audience through a new ad-supported model that will be in place for all of their series and events by the end of the year. YouTube is also expecting to unveil a new slate of new and returning shows in the coming weeks, the company says.