Brow Beat

Director Craig Zobel on Faith vs. Science in His New Post-Apocalyptic Drama

Check out all Slate’s interviews from the 2015 Sundance Film Festival.

In director Craig Zobel’s science fiction drama Z for Zachariah, Margot Robbie, Chiwetel Ejiofor, and Chris Pine play the sole known survivors of a nuclear holocaust. While working to survive within the last remaining habitable territory, the three strangers must also navigate the uneasy tension that arises within their relationships with each other.

Screenwriter Nissar Modi loosely adapted the script from Robert C. O’Brien’s 1974 novel of the same name, adding Pine’s character Caleb and giving the story a more contemporary spin. We asked Zobel about Caleb’s role in the narrative, the conflict between religion and science at the end of the world, and the experience of shooting in the vast expanses of New Zealand.

Interview booked by Raquel Bruno. Executive produced by Ayana Morali.