It’s time to put on your director’s hat. Yes, it’s time and I need you to join me on a behind-the-scenes journey of the small screen sensation, Upload. In a recent conversation with director Tom Marshall, we dove into the quirky tech world. Upload is a Prime Video original with compelling characters, quirky comedy, seamless effects, along with smart storytelling.
Upload has been stealing hearts and tickling funny bones with its unique take on the not-so-distant future. In this exclusive interview, we get a glimpse into one of the minds behind the magic. A director who effortlessly talks tech and TV and melds them into a visual tapestry.
Can you tell us a little bit about you and your background and your experience in directing television, particularly the sci-fi comedy genre?
Tom Marshall: Yeah, I started off doing little short films when I was about 20, and one of my comedy short films got me noticed. I’ve always had a love of comedy and sitcoms, and that’s where my passion lies. I’ve been fortunate to work on both UK and US shows, like “Ted Lasso” and “Space Force,” which allowed me to explore different genres.
The show features advanced technology and visual effects that impact human life. What’s your favorite piece of technology from the show that you wish existed today?
Tom Marshall: The phone hand concept is pretty cool, and I’d love to see that become a reality, like a screen floating in front of your face. Technology is advancing fast, and it’s both exciting and a bit terrifying to think about where it’s heading.
The cast of “Upload” is diverse, and in these episodes, there’s a Thanksgiving event that feels authentic. How do you approach showcasing the individuality and cultural backgrounds of the characters while maintaining the show’s narrative and tone?
Tom Marshall: The authenticity comes from the actors themselves. We tried to create chemistry between them and give each character their moments, showing their nuanced backgrounds and relationships. It’s all about making it feel like a real family with a rich backstory.
How much of the comedy in the show is ad-libbed, and how much is in the script? How do the actors contribute to the humor?
Tom Marshall: It’s a mix. The scripts are well-written, and we always shoot what’s on the page. However, there’s room for ad-libs, tags, and little additions. Some actors, like Rhys, bring unique and surprising elements to their performances, and it’s always worth exploring different takes to capture those moments.
Upload is a sci-fi comedy series from Emmy-winning writer Greg Daniels. Greg is responsible for hits like The Office, Parks and Recreation, King of the Hill and more. Upload is set in a technologically advanced future where holographic phones, self-driving vehicles, AI assistance, and 3D food printers are the norm. And, forget about dying – instead, you’ll be “uploaded” to a virtual reality afterlife, and enjoy all the comforts of a world-class resort. Provided you can afford it.
In Upload Season Three, we pick back up with Nora and freshly downloaded Nathan. They two work to navigate their relationship and continue racing to stop the mysterious conspiracy that threatens to destroy millions of lives. Can they shut down Freeyond, and finally have a real life together? Or is it just a matter of time until Nathan’s head explodes? Meanwhile, in Lakeview, a backup copy of Nathan has been activated. Ingrid’s not about to let this second chance at love slip away. Back in the real world, Aleesha rises through the ranks of Horizen. She’s managing AI education and falls into a new romantic relationship. And Luke, all alone in Lakeview, is forced to come up with the funds to pay for his stay in paradise, driving him to work in The Grey Zone.