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Exclusive: Ellen Page, Steve Blackman, lift lid on Umbrella Academy

New Netflix series defines a post-Marvel world for Netflix, ARTHUR GOLDSTUCK learns from its star and showrunner.



Showrunner Steve Blackman (left) and singer/comic book writer Gerard Way (right)

Equally significantly, it was developed for Netflix by Steve Blackman, who won awards for his writing on Fargo and was executive producer of Altered Carbon, set in one of the most imaginatively realised future worlds yet seen on television.

We had the pleasure of interviewing Blackman, along with the main star of Umbrella Academy, Ellen page, who was acclaimed for her roles in Juno, Inception and the X-Men movies. The key message that emerged from the discussions were that this is not television as usual. And it is not supereroes as usual. The first question asked of Blackman and Page, was whether the dysfunctional family was the factor that drew them to becoming involved.

“To me, that is the show,” was Page’s instant response. Blackman echoed her: “That was the key to the show.”

He elaborated: “We’re trying to avoid the tropes of the superhero world but really what I think brought me to this, and maybe Ellen also and the other actresses, it really is about a family. It’s a show about a dysfunctional family trying to reconnect and come back together.”

Page believes that many viewers will see themselves in different ways in all the characters.

“When we meet all the characters, they are struggling with pretty intense issues. And I would imagine probably people in varying degrees can all relate to that. Their powers are an extension of their difficulties and I just thought all of that was really quite beautiful.”

Click here to read more about Ellen Page’s character development, and how creating shows for Netflix differs from creating shows for network TV.

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