“We wanted to make sure it was something that was unique that brought people together,” declares showrunner and executive producer Mark Friedman about AMC fantasy anthology “Dispatches From Elsewhere.” “I feel good that it was something positive and uplifting for people that they could see themselves in.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Friedman above.
The limited series centers around Peter (creator and star Jason Segel), Simone (Eve Lindley), Janice (Oscar and Emmy winner Sally Field) and Fredwynn (Grammy-winning Outkast frontman André Benjamin), who are brought together by chance and drawn into a mysterious real-life game hiding behind the veil of ordinary life. The series explores the need for connection, community and purpose. It also co-stars recent Oscar nominee Richard E. Grant (“Can You Ever Forgive Me?“) as the man behind the mysterious adventure.
When Friedman was approached about taking on a showrunner role, he had to find the best way to convince Segel to entrust him with his passion project. “I’m a writer, so if I can’t close the deal in an email, I shouldn’t be hired anyway. There’s an amount of wine that you need to drink to write this email,” he jokes. “If you drink too much this is just going to be embarrassing. You have to get the sweet spot of how many glasses of wine is like the truth serum. What I said to him is that I want to be proud of something I work on. I wanted to be passionate about something and proud of something and I felt like this was that opportunity.”
It ultimately worked, as the two hit it off straight away, particularly because freedman was so aware of how important it was to stay true to Segel’s very personal vision for the story. “This is Jason’s show. It’s his baby,” he explains. “Ultimately, success or failure is going to fall on him in a huge way.”
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