I love The Expanse. While there are more choices than ever on what you can watch on network television and the streaming services, I absolutely believe The Expanse is near the top. Over five seasons, the incredible sci-fi series based on the novels by James S. A. Corey (the pen name used by collaborators Daniel Abraham and Ty Franck) has used the genre of science-fiction to consistently deliver complex and dynamic storylines that are unlike anything else on TV. I really cannot recommend this series enough.
Shortly after seeing the Season 5 finale (which is now streaming on Amazon Prime Video) I was able to speak with producers Naren Shankar, Daniel Abraham, and Ty Franck. While I already posted what they had to say about the making of Season 5 and why certain decisions were made, I’ve got a bit more to offer and it has to do with Season 6 and the series finale.
With The Expanse Season 6 being the final season and how everyone knew this going in, I was curious if they were doing an extended episode for the series finale and how many episodes they’d be making. While they wouldn’t reveal how many episodes the final season would include, regarding the series finale, Shankar and Abraham told me:
“Let’s put it this way. There’s going to be a lot going on in that last episode.”
“I feel like we’re going out big, I think we’re going out well.”
“We ain’t going out small.”
They also talked about the importance of sticking the landing, how Season 6 will pay off “the story that we began in episode one of season one,” if fans can look forward to a big 4K Blu-ray box set when the series is over, and more.
Check out what they had to say below. For more on The Expanse Season 5, here’s my spoiler chat with Steven Strait (Jim Holden) and Wes Chatham (Amos Burton).
Collider: Jumping into season six a little bit, how long will season six be? Is it 10 episodes? Is it 13? What are you guys doing?
DANIEL ABRAHAM: Has Amazon announced that?
No, but I like fishing for information.
TY FRANCK: I respect you’re fishing.
NAREN SHANKAR: I don’t think we can really at liberty, discuss that yet. So we may have to, dodge that one. Sorry.
No, it’s totally fine. With season six scheduled to be the last season, are you aiming for a 90-minute episode or anything special for that last episode?
SHANKAR: Let’s put it this way. There’s going to be a lot going on in that last episode.
ABRAHAM: I feel like we’re going out big, I think we’re going out well.
SHANKAR: We ain’t going out small.
The fact is you guys have done five incredible seasons. And obviously, you want to stick the landing… do you guys feel that pressure of wanting to deliver something special to sort of bookend this amazing series?
FRANCK: Well, yes.
ABRAHAM: I don’t know if, this season I don’t know if I felt any special pressure. Like I think, the core writing team on this show has always felt like every episode had to be good, every season had to be good. And for most of the show, we didn’t know we were getting another season at the end of the season. So we were always trying for some kind of dramatic, enjoyable ending for every season so that if we didn’t get another season, the fans would feel like they got something special at the end. I think we’ve just always been playing the game that way. So yes, this season is unusual and yes, we’re aware of that, but I don’t think it has changed our process much.
SHANKAR: Although Ty and Daniel do say, “Stick the landing.” Quite a bit.
SHANKAR: And I absolutely do respect that. I mean that with regard to the show, but also with the books they’re working on book nine now, so yeah. So that is a, because a bad ending can ruin the rest of it.
For people that have not read the books, what can you tease people about season six?
FRANCK: I think, the thing that season six does is it pays off the story that we began in episode one of season one where the Martians, the Earthers and the Belters were all in this incredibly uneasy and unstable political system with the Belters absolutely being at the foot of that table and everybody fighting for their place in the solar system. I think we pay off that story in a very satisfying way. And we keep some of the mystery intact involving the greater forces of the universe that humans are only starting to become aware. If we want to tell more stories.
SHANKAR: Yeah, well put.
Where are you in the filming process? Have you started filming? What’s your schedule for actually making season six?
SHANKAR: We just started, we just finished the first week, half week actually last week. So we’re rolling along, we’re into it. Breck Eisner’s up in Toronto doing the first block and off we go.
Have you figured out who’s going to direct the last few episodes?
SHANKAR: We have. We’re all booked up for episodes, yeah.
Have you figured out when you want to get season six on the air, has Amazon asked for a certain date? And have you guys talked about doing like a big 4K Blu-ray box set when this thing is all over and doing something special with that?
Naren: Amazon is far as I know, and based on their delivery date schedule is roughly around the same time as it is this year. But we have no, and those things can change. So that’s hard to say, and we have talked about doing like an amazing box set, something really collectible, but there’s tons of additional material that we have really put on the early releases and a 4K HDR master would be amazing, a remastering would be incredible.
I’m hoping you guys get to do that. Well I could ask you another 59 questions, but I got to go. I’m just going to say seriously, congrats. Loved season five. Thank you for what you guys do.
SHANKAR: Thank you.
ABRAHAM: Thank you.
And offers a bit of hope, too.
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