M. Night Shyamalan finds TV ‘terrifying’ but says he has a 60-episode plan for his Apple thriller series, ‘Servant’
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- Filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan has mostly avoided television in his two-decade career.
- He discussed why at a New York Comic Con panel on Thursday for his upcoming Apple TV Plus thriller series, “Servant.”
- “You can probably count on two hands every show that has gone from beginning to end with the same quality,” he said. “That was terrifying to me.”
- But he was drawn to “Servant” because it’s a half-hour thriller and “had a play-like quality to it.”
- “Servant” debuts on Apple TV Plus on November 28. The service launches November 1.
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Filmmaker M. Night Shyamalan, known for thrillers like 1999’s “The Sixth Sense” and more recently “Glass,” is diving back into television for the first time since Fox’s 2015 mystery series “Wayward Pines,” which he produced.
Shyamalan discussed the upcoming Apple TV Plus thriller series, “Servant ” — which he produced and directed two episodes of — during a New York Comic Con panel on Thursday. During the discussion, he revealed why he’s mostly avoided television in his two-decade career.
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“The great thing about the [television] format is that it’s a character-driven format,” Shyamalan said. “You come to watch week to week because you feel connected to the characters. I love that. But the amount of content you have to deliver for the amount of time and the amount of resources — the math just doesn’t work, which is why you can probably count on two hands every show that has gone from beginning to end with the same quality. That was terrifying to me.”
But “Servant,” about a mother that becomes disturbingly attached to a doll after her child dies, drew him back to the medium.
“On this show, [creator] Tony [Basgallop] came up with an amazing premise that’s a half-hour thriller and I went ‘we might be able to do that at this level,'” Shyamalan continued. “We have a sense of the story and we know where it’s going to go, so in my head, it’s 60 episodes.”
He added that the show takes place entirely in a single location, so it “had a play-like quality to it.”
“Servant” stars Toby Kebbell, Lauren Ambrose, Rupert Grint, and Nell Tiger Free and debuts on Apple TV Plus on November 28. Apple TV Plus launches November 1 for $4.99 a month.