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Chris Carter Has 99 Cantos, But He Won’t Binge One #TCA14

Chris Carter intends his Amazon science fiction drama The After to last 99 episodes.

“I have a goal, I told Amazon this the other day, of 99 episodes,” the series creator said Saturday at the TCA summer press tour. “There are a number of influences here, and one of them is Dante’s Inferno. There are 99 cantos, and I’m using that as my model.”

Carter was joined onstage by the series’ cast. Highlights from the panel included:

• Amazon announced earlier in the day that it would binge-release all episodes comedy Transparent simultaneously in September. But Carter said that the first eight hours of The After will be released will be released as four staggered, two-hour episodes. “They’re not going to put them all on at once,” Carter said.

• Carter was asked about his more-than-a-decade-long absence from television, which began when The X-Files ended in 2002. “I took a break because I needed a good break,” Carter said. “For me, The X-Files, among the other shows we did, was 10 years of output. I needed the equivalent input, which is why I took that time away.”

• “The simple truth is Amazon read the script, liked it and wanted to do it,” Carter said about working with the digital service, which he called “a frontier in the business.” He went on to compare the experience of working with the company to his time in broadcast television “It’s not [different] in the sense that you’re trying to do something creative and dealing with compromise and limitations budgetarily or whatever comes your way.” He added, “The different part of the process is that we’re doing eight episodes instead of 25 episodes, which is what we did the second season of the episodes. The first two seasons of The X-Files we did 49 episodes. That is a trial by fire.”