Karl Schaefer Interview: Z Nation searches for a new home


Karl Schaefer gives Z Nation fans an inside look at his plans, where the series will go, if it finds a new home, and the dark side of Black Summer.

1428 Elm: The Z Nation fans are up-in-arms over the loss of their favorite show. Has there been any talk with other networks, such as Netflix, about picking up the torch and carrying on?

Karl: We’ve been reaching out to any network that will listen. Nothing solid to report at this point. I’d say the chances of more Z Nation “universe” shows is better than for more episodes of the mothership. But I’ll do anything that keeps the characters together in some configuration.

1428 Elm: Or perhaps a movie to complete the series in one fell swoop?

KS: One of the things I’ve wanted to do is a series of Z Nation movies that are the “lost episodes” of Z Nation.

1428 Elm: If it’s a resounding no, can you tell us what future you ideally saw for Murphy and the gang?

KS: Season 6 would have been our heroes helping to run NewMerica while going out into the Apocalypse on missions. Warren would be the Sheriff, Doc would be the barber and therapist, Murphy would run Limbo, while George and the others go out on missions into the Apocalypse.

1428 Elm: Reading up on Black Summer, I see you are the creator but have passed the writing reigns over to John Hyams, and that in essence Black Summer and Z Nation are entirely different shows. Why did you choose to switch to the more dramatic side rather than stick with the humorous?

KS: We wanted to make a straight up scary zombie show that was as realistic as possible, but still different than what you’ve seen before. 

1428 Elm: Black Summer is written as a chapter book rather than a series, therefore is it possible that down the road we could meet Murphy before prison? Or any of the characters pre-Z Nation?

KS: The plan is that you can watch all six hours of Black Summer without commercials. It’s broken up into chapters of all different lengths, so you never know if it’s a five minute chapter or 45 minutes. We do nothing to make the audience comfortable. There’s no exposition as to what is happening. You only know what the characters know. And we definitely don’t give you what you want.

1428 Elm: How many seasons are you aiming for Black Summer to run?

KS: As many as Netflix will buy.

1428 Elm: What other projects are you busy working on that the Z Nation fans may want to keep an eye on for the future?

KS: A reboot of Eerie Indiana. Working with the podcast guys from KING FALLS AM to adapt that for television.

1428 Elm : To close it off, is there anything you want say as a send off to Z Nation, ‘the little show that could’?

KS: It’s been a great ride. We tried to be as interactive with the fans as possible (and you were a big help). Now that we have such a great bunch of like minds together we need to get another show on the air. I’ll miss all of you.

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You heard it here Z Nation fans, keep the petitions circulating and perhaps we’ll see the bitemark gang once again! If you want to see the series get picked up by another network, sign the online petition.

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