As season two of HBO’s ‘The Leftovers’ premieres this October, ‘Entertainment Weekly’ chatted with showrunner Damon Lindelof about his career highs and lows.
Lindelof, who we all know was the co-creator and showrunner of ‘Lost’, stated that both his highs and lows happened around the time Season One of ‘Lost’ aired:
“In terms of a sustained career high, the summer between the first and second seasons of ‘Lost’. The show was in the zeitgeist, and there was that strange feeling of being in a restaurant and people at the next table are talking about what they thought was in The Hatch, and then it culminated in us winning the drama series Emmy.”
While Lindelof experienced other career highs following ‘Lost’ (after all he co-wrote ‘Star Trek Into Darkness’ and ‘World War Z’), he shared that this period was the longest stretch of time where he really felt happy with his success.
His career low happened to be during the time that led up to his career high. (That’s usually how it happens, doesn’t it?)
‘Lost’ catapulted to one of the most popular TV shows. It was an anti-procedural series with an ongoing mystery at the front and center, inspired by reality shows like ‘Survivor’ and perhaps TV viewers’ desire for a change in storytelling.
The ratings were exceptional and critics lauded the show. This positive reaction, however, was a source of stress for Lindelof.
“We were hearing ‘jumping the shark’ all the time in the first season. People were already saying it. They were saying, ‘If they do not answer this mystery satisfyingly, I’m going to be really pissed.’ And so there was all that pressure, and I hadn’t put any thought into any of those things as J.J. and I were writing the pilot, because there just wasn’t any time to doubt it. [ABC] was just like: ‘You have 12 weeks to generate two hours of material — Go.’ Not 12 weeks to write it, but 12 weeks to write it and make it and edit it, all of it. So once it was done and it existed and it turned out well did I start to become victim to my own insecurities. So that was an incredibly dark time, and nothing that I’ve ever experienced emotionally has come close.”