Michael Schur Interview: ‘The Good Place’ showrunner
Michael Schur put an end to “The Good Place” earlier this year, wrapping up the cosmic comedy to the audience’s satisfaction, especially the Emmy voters. Schur is nominated as a producer in Best Comedy Series and for Best Comedy Writing for the series finale, “Whenever You’re Ready.” Four actors nabbing bids include Ted Danson, D’Arcy Carden, William Jackson Harper and guest star Maya Rudolph. Schur is especially proud of Carden and Harper for finally getting their first nominations. “It was lovely; it was unexpected,” says the showrunner in an exclusive new interview with Gold Derby. “It just was very, very heartening to see the work that Will and D’Arcy did especially get recognized.” Watch the video interview with Schur above.
While it was not easy to say goodbye to the world that he created, Schur knew far in advance that “The Good Place” would not be a long-running series. “I had the thought early on in Season 1 that if we’re lucky enough to get a foothold in the TV landscape and we get to call our own shot, I imagined we’d be calling that shot long before you might think we would, being a network TV show,” he reveals. Schur admits it was the “best of all possible worlds” in terms of the creative team wanting to end the show and NBC agreeing to it. With his vast experience in television, working on long-running sitcoms like “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation,” Schur is happy that the landscape welcomes shorter runs for shows that are better suited for that length.
As for the challenge of how to provide finality to a series in which all the main characters were technically dead, Schur knew the best conclusion would be for our heroes to finally confront death, and make peace with it. The series finale, “Whenever You’re Ready,” features the characters reaching the real Good Place and being presented with the option to end their existence entirely once they were satisfied. Schur offers that this would be the most ideal way to reach the end of one’s life: “It would be so lovely if what happened is you did everything that you could possibly want to do in every direction with every single person and then one day you just had this overwhelming sense of peace and calm and serenity and then you just had a big party and you went through a door.”