Craig Zobel on casting Chiwetel Ejiofor in Z for Zachariah (VIDEO).

Why Craig Zobel Cast Chiwetel Ejiofor as a Post-Apocalyptic Survivor in Z for Zachariah

Why Craig Zobel Cast Chiwetel Ejiofor as a Post-Apocalyptic Survivor in Z for Zachariah

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Slate's Culture Blog
Jan. 26 2015 3:10 PM

Why Craig Zobel Cast Chiwetel Ejiofor as a Post-Apocalyptic Survivor in Z for Zachariah

zforzachariah
Stars Chris Pine, Margot Robbie, and Chiwetel Ejiofor.

Sundance

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

Aside from the addition of a third character, the most notable change in director Craig Zobel’s film adaptation of the novel Z for Zachariah comes from the casting of a black actor, Chiwetel Ejiofor, as scientist John Loomis.

While the film’s racial dynamics aren’t as overt as one may expect, the film does address them in its own quiet way. We asked Zobel about the decision to cast Ejiofor—as well as how Z for Zachariah is reminiscent of another movie about a post-apocalyptic love triangle, the Harry Belafonte-starring The World, the Flesh, and the Devil.

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Slate Sessions video edited by Daniel Hubbard. Interview booked by Raquel Bruno. Executive produced by Ayana Morali.

Aisha Harris is a Slate culture writer and host of the Slate podcast Represent.

Daniel Hubbard is a writer, editor, and director living in New York City.