the umbrella academy featurette

Did you eliminate the idea that this is an alternate present where JFK lived? Was that a bridge too far for the series?

Yes. I think the idea is, I mean, viewers may still feel that. The truth is, we want it to feel like Children of Men a little bit. I don’t mean the bleakness of Children of Men, but to respect the world. So the viewers are watching, they may or may not notice that I’ve eliminated certain pieces of technology. It’s supposed to be now, contemporary, but certain things are slightly different. So I suppose you could say we’re in a little bit of an alternate universe but I want it to feel very, very subtle. I’m not sure you picked up on it but there are no cell phones. No one uses a cell phone ever. It’s odd things like that. Certain types of cars we used to create a palette, and we shot the show on a very special camera called the Alexa 65. We’re one of a very few handful of shows that use Arriflex’s camera because it’s really a movie camera. We also shot a very cinematic 4K too so I wanted the world to feel a little bit different. And of course, we have some little Easter eggs for the fans. If they look around, there’s many, many Easter eggs hidden in episodes that the graphic novel fans will find very interesting if they pay attention.

Could Hargreaves have ever been an alien on the show?

I’m not going to comment on that. I’ll just say that Hargreaves is a mystery and will be a mystery if we’re lucky enough to have another season or two or three. We’ll definitely explore that character more.

Vanya apologizes for everything. Do a lot of women relate to that as we’re learning how society conditions women to apologize for things that aren’t even their responsibility?

Really it was about her upbringing. Here she is a child, told by her one parental figure that she’s not extraordinary like her six siblings. She’s told she’s ordinary and there’s nothing special about her. I think that molds her entire life and her whole personality that she’s an outsider and she’s an outsider in this group of kids and an outsider in life. So she goes around life feeling marginalized by who she is, by who she’s supposed to be and fighting to understand how she fits in. So I feel like Ellen [Page] does an extraordinary job having this character have this metamorphosis over the season, without giving too much away, that really feels like somebody coming out of their shell given the circumstances. It was a very painful upbringing for Vanya, so debilitating emotionally to be shut out like that.

Was Vanya on anxiety medication in the comics?

I don’t know what specifically was in the comics but for our world, it helped to make sense of why her power didn’t ever manifest. That was part of the reason for that. Hargreaves had a hand in that without giving too much away. She’s taken these pills her whole life and been told that she needs to take them.

Is that a tricky thing because you don’t necessarily want to tell viewers that if they get off their meds they’ll have superpowers, but there are kids who are given medication they maybe don’t need?

No, it’s a good point. The lesson here is some people need them. In her case, she didn’t need them. We were very careful. We’re not trying to send a message to people saying taking pills is bad. In her case, taking pills when you don’t need the pills didn’t work for her. It’s a good point. We tried to be as sensitive about it as possible. I don’t think we ever say what it is. I think she says it’s for a nervous condition.

One piece of technology I did notice was Allison (Emmy Raver-Lampman) still uses microfiche.

Oh, I love that you noticed that.

Was that an important part of the world or just because you’ve gotta have a microfiche scene?

That’s all VFX. I wanted to mix in some older technology, just to feel slightly leaning to the left. It’s so subtle, some of the things I wanted to do. I think a whole generation of kids may not know what microfiche is. You and I know microfiche, but I thought it was an interesting way of showing how people used to look at things and make you go, “Where am I? Is this right here, right now?” But, you know, there is no microfiche machine you can find so the screen is done with VFX.

In success, would seasons two and three follow Dallas and Hotel Oblivion?

Yes, if we’re fortunate to get another season or two, the idea is to stay in the world of what Gerard and Gabriel created, to add my spin on it and make it a television show. I love where they’re going and the stuff I’ve read so far, both in volume two and volume three. I really like Gerard and Gabriel. We’ve had a good collaborative experience so to feel like we’re in that world will be the continuing theme for us.

Pages: Previous page 1 2

Cool Posts From Around the Web: