‘Falling Water’ Showrunner Blake Masters on the Importance of Giving Answers

     November 11, 2016

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From executive producer Gale Anne Hurd and showrunner Blake Masters, the USA Network drama series Falling Water tells the story of three unrelated people – a trend-spotter named Tess (Lizzie Brocheré), a fixer named Burton (David Ajala) and a cop named Taka (Will Yun Lee) – each motivated by different but very personal factors. As they realize they’re connected by the fact that they are all dreaming separate parts of a single common dream, they must figure out what their dreams are trying to tell them and how much they can alter reality by altering the course of their dreams.

During this exclusive phone interview with Collider, executive producer Blake Masters (who co-created the show with the late Henry Bromell) talked about whether he feels they achieved the show they set out to make, telling a story that stands apart from the crowd, why he believes it’s important to give the audience answers, what viewers can expect from what’s to come, letting the story live in the silences, what he’s learned from completing a season of this series, and how Season 2 (if they are given one) will be a surprise to audiences. Be aware that there are some spoilers discussed.

falling-water-posterCollider: When you started out on this journey, what were the goals that you set out with? And by the end of the season, did you feel satisfied that you had achieved those goals?

BLAKE MASTERS: We set out to make something that stood apart from the crowd and pulled the story in a different way and embraced a different view of the world. I know where it all ends up, and it’s in a place that’s unique and different. I love it for that. The way we approach the show is that we try to do things really organically. By the end of the season, we actually achieve a place that’s, on the one hand, a really beautiful ending for the initial 10 episodes, with a sense of conclusion and shape, and yet, at the same time, has certain levels of ambiguity that open the door for a fabulous Season 2. What’s great about it is that we don’t leave you with, “Wait, I don’t understand what that was,” kind of questions, and yet, you want to know what happens next. That was really always the goal. By the end of the first season, we want you to understand how this world works, but there are still a lot more questions about what’s going to happen next. One of the really interesting things about where we’re getting to in the season, with Episodes 5 and 6, is that we begin to start to answer the questions to pin together the way in which these strands we’ve been weaving come together, and we’ll show what’s underneath them. We’ll show you where the hidden connections are, that allow you to understand how the world fits together. Episodes 5 and 6 are really important because we start to give you a lot of answers.

From the beginning, you’ve been pretty clear in saying that people would have answers, by the end of the season, and that they’d really have a sense of what the show is. Is where you ended up exactly where you thought you’d end up?

MASTERS: The mythology of the show has never changed. What the rules of the universe are has never changed. The way in which the story passed and the way we navigated our way through the dark forest did change, but the forest itself stayed exactly the same. We never changed the big underpinnings of the show. We never had to improvise that or change that. I had ideas for how we were going to navigate the forest, but one of the ways I run a show is I always let that go and try to find the natural way through the forest. By the end of the season, we did exactly what I wanted to do, which was to come out the far side of the forest in an unexpected and surprising way that gives you conclusion and satisfaction, and yet, opens you up to go, “My god, where do they go from here? I want to know what happens next. I want more.”

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