‘Ozark’ Season 4 Featured a Hollywood Star Behind the Camera

by TK Sanders
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Ozark’s long-anticipated fourth season debuted recently, and it featured an A-list actor in the director’s chair for two of the most pivotal episodes. If you guessed ‘Jason Bateman’ as the actor, then you know your Ozark trivia. Bateman directed more episodes than any other person during the show’s previous three seasons. Besides breathing life into the main character, Marty Byrde, Bateman clearly put his imprint onto many different aspects of the story and feel of the show since day one.

Interestingly enough, though, Bateman is the wrong answer. In fact, he didn’t direct a single episode in the first part of Season 4. Maybe he simply didn’t have the time to take on the top job this time around. Or maybe Ozark creators Bill Dubuque and Mark Williams wanted a completely different point of view for the show’s march to the finish line. Perhaps they wanted a woman’s point of view — someone known for both her range as an actress, and her recent turn as a prestige television villain.

Who Directed the Last Two Episodes of Ozark?

Or maybe Netflix just likes to keep their own work in-house. No matter the reason, Hollywood powerhouse Robin Wright got the nod to direct the final two episodes of Ozark. The House of Cards alum actually directed 10 episodes of the political drama during its run, so she has the experience. As Claire Underwood, ambitious political wife to Frank Underwood, Wright deftly crafted a three-dimensional, modern villain for the story. For a show like Ozark, which examines the blurred lines between right and wrong as its primary theme, Wright’s creative experience is invaluable.

Wright’s directing experience also spans beyond just a few episodes of House of Cards. In 2017, after multiple decades as an A-list actress in films like The Princess Bride and Forrest Gump, Wright directed a short film called The Dark of Night. She followed that up with a feature called Land. Wright, herself, also starred in the feature alongside Demián Bichir and Kim Dickens. Her directing style earned strong reviews from the cast of Land. Bichir said in an interview that Wright is a very smart artist who knows exactly what she wants.

What We Can Expect from Season 4

Andrew Bernstein and Alik Sakharov direct the remainder of Season 4’s episodes. Both men previously directed a handful of Ozark episodes in prior seasons; so they know the tone of the show extremely well. Sakharov previously directed six episodes in Seasons 2 and 3, while Bernstein took four episodes of the world-building Season 1.

Part II of Season 4 will drop on Netflix in May. This means the series is nearing the end of production as we speak. Bateman, who we noted has directed many episodes of the series, weighed in on the final season finally making it to screen after many Covid-related delays.

“It is working out better than I could have ever hoped for. And I had high, high hopes,” he said. “[This season includes] a lot of things that I was really curious to see if I could deliver to an audience as a director.”

Outsider.com