We Asked Wisconsin’s Andrew Hinderaker Why Netflix Killed His Hit Show

“Away” was a popular show, but Netflix didn’t renew it.

OCT. 19 WAS A BAD DAY for screenwriter and Madison native Andrew Hinderaker. That was the day Netflix announced it wouldn’t renew “Away,” his Hilary Swank-helmed space series, despite strong viewership numbers. Hinderaker picked himself up and started working on an unannounced horror series “about how hope can survive in the bleakest of environments.” We asked him to take one last look back.

How many seasons were you planning for?

Three was the hope. We were really interested in season two being the mission on Mars and the final season, once they’re home, what it’s like. I wrote the finale and ended thinking, you never know, this is an incredibly expensive show. Even if it’s quite successful, and it was, you might not get a second season.

Were you given an explanation?

There was enormous turnover and change in leadership at Netflix, and we may not have fallen into the plan of what that network is becoming.

Is “Away” the show that your fifth-grade or sixth-grade self would have wanted you to make?

I was always interested in space, but I wasn’t the kid who dreamed of becoming an astronaut. But one of the great thrills of working on the show was spending time at NASA, getting to know astronauts and their families.


This story is part of Milwaukee Magazine‘s January issue.

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Matt has written for Milwaukee Magazine since 2006, when he was a lowly intern. Since then, he’s held the posts of assistant news editor and, most recently, senior editor. He’s lived in South Carolina, Tennessee, Connecticut, Iowa, and Indiana but mostly in Wisconsin. He wants to do more fishing but has a hard time finding worms. For the magazine, Matt has written about city government, schools, religion, coffee roasters and Congress.