Apple TV’s Extrapolations Writer Discusses the Story: ‘This is the Near Future’


Since Apple entered the streaming world with the launch of Apple TV+, the tech giant has been offering sparse but creative content to the audience, from personal stories like Shrinking and Ted Lasso to thrillers like Slow Horses and Severance. Written by screenwriter Scott Z. Burns (The Report & Contagion), Extrapolations, starring Marion Cotillard, Kit Harington, Tobey Maguire, Meryl Streep, and Eiza González, reflects a vital situation that is closely related to the whole world, the climate crisis.

The official synopsis reads:

Extrapolations is a bracing drama that introduces a near future where the chaotic effects of climate change have become embedded into our everyday lives. Eight interwoven stories about love, work, faith and family from across the globe will explore the intimate, life-altering choices that must be made when the planet is changing faster than the population. Every story is different, but the fight for our future is universal. And when the fate of humanity is up against a ticking clock, the battle between courage and complacency has never been more urgent. Are we brave enough to become the solution to our own undoing before it’s too late?

Although the series will take place between 2037 and 2070, the producers wanted to create a vision of the future without taking the audience too far from the present, including the intense effects of this change on human relationships. Burns, producer Dorothy Fortenberry, and executive producer Michael Ellenberg answered Collider‘s questions.

”We wanted it to really look and feel quite close to now. It was important to us that it wasn’t technologically alienating, that people weren’t just, you know, moon boots and space cars, that it felt close to home. But, as time goes on, we get farther from the present day, and so the technology and the future get a little farther from what we’re doing right now. We had the freedom to really go in some fun and crazy directions imagining potential futures, how bad climate change will be, how bad the effects of it will be, and what that’ll do to human relationships.”

Related: Extrapolations Review: Packed, Powerful and Deep, Apple TV+’s Limited Series Cranks Up the Creative Heat

‘The Future Is Not Written’

Apple TV+

Burns stated that the series was not just made for the present; it wanted to push people into questions about the future. Also, the producers said they tried to reflect on what it would be like to be a family, friend, or alone in a world where the climate crisis is worsening. They want to make the audience feel that the numbers are not just graphics and what can cause emotion, ”I think what the show does, at its best, is it shows you, what does climate change feel like?” Fortenberry added.

However, the future is not written, and there is still hope. Although Ellenberg said that people would determine how the future will be, the hope for a better future can be found in the story.

”This is a possible future. We control the future still, it’s not written, and everyone we spoke to this can go another way, and in a better way. Hopefully, it gives people an understanding of the subject, of their own role in it, what it means to them, and there’s still a positive future available to us.”

Extrapolations is streaming now on Apple TV+.

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