I recently had the pleasure of speaking with Keith Allan, who plays the lead role of Murphy on SyFy's Z Nation . This man is far different than the cold, abrasive character he plays on Z Nation. He's funny and light hearted. Besides acting, Keith is a writer, director, producer and film maker. This is one talented man.
KM "Your character Murphy is not exactly a nice guy. What is it like to play someone so different from yourself ?"
KA "It's fantastic. I love it. You get to explore a different side of yourself when you're playing someone not like yourself and pull from darker parts of yourself. For me, the character Murphy is very cautious. He's seen a lot of deaths and inhumanities both in prison, being experimented on and now he's like a prisoner again. No one is looking out for him. He's on guard and he doesn't trust anyone. As the show unfolds we will see him evolve. We're at war and survival is an everyday battle, in those situations people can't help but grow close, it's human nature."
KM "Can you tell us a little about the makeup process you go through for filming?"
KA "Synapse FX does Z Nation's special fx. They're amazing! I spend some where between 1-4 hours per shoot getting my makeup done. It depends on what we're shooting that day. A lot of it is painted on by hand. It is Corinne Foster's art. I'm not her guinea pig, but her subject. You want to take time to do things right."
KM "Have you finished filming for this season?"
KA "We are filming the season finale this Thursday."
KM "Z Nation is not your first experience with zombies, you wrote the screenplay for both movies Rise Of The Zombies (2012 starring Danny Trejo) and Zombie Night (2013 starring Anthony Michael Hall). Where did you draw inspiration from while writing them?"
KA "I love zombie movies, well, all horror really, I've watched a lot of them over the years. I focused on trying to come up with themes and scenarios I haven't seen before. I try to come up with creative ways to kill people."
KM "If you had to pick a favorite zombie movie what would it be?"
KA "I would have to say Shaun Of The Dead. I love the balance of humor and gore."
KM "What projects are working on right now?"
KA "I'm working on a couple of things. We're still filming Z Nation, but I am also working on making a film based on the play Hearts Like Fists. It's a dark comedy. I played Dr. X in the play. It's a graphic novel story about three super heroes trying to stop Dr. X from murdering couples in love."
KM "Can you tell us about the people who work behind the scenes of Z Nation?"
KA "The Director of Photography, Alex Yellen is amazing. The look of Z Nation is fantastic. He also worked with me on my movie 11/11/11.
Synapse does all the special FX for Z Nation, they are incredible too. So many talented people."
KM "You have done a lot of work with The Asylum Studios. What was that like?"
KA "They were great. I worked there as a stage manager. The day I found out I had the part as Murphy, I was the last one in the office to know. The people at Asylum held an emergency meeting. They hid everyone in a conference room and called me in. When they announced I had the part everyone applauded. They were so supportive. They have been great to me."
Keith was a real pleasure to interview. I look forward to watching his character evolve and slash through hordes of zombies on Z Nation and I know we will see more great movies and roles from him in the future. If you haven't seen Z Nation or his films I strongly recommend that you do so.
2013 Zombie Night (TV Movie) (screenplay)
2013 Ragin Cajun Redneck Gators (writer)
2013 Social Nightmare (TV Movie) (screenplay)
2012 Rise of the Zombies (TV Movie) (screenplay)
2011 11/11/11 (Video) (screenplay)
2008 Billy and Sally Go Bionic (Short) (writer)
To see a full list of Keith Allan's movies, parts and projects please visit his IMDb page:
Twitter account: @KeithAllanactor