Here are some answers to frequently asked questions from Bleeders. All answers are from James Roland (creator/writer/co-executive producer).
Q: How can I connect with other Bleeders?
A: There’s a fan-made Facebook site that’s very active (separate from the official site from NBC|Universal): https://www.facebook.com/groups/BloodDriveSyFy/
Q: Will there be a season two?
A: Not likely, but we haven’t given up hope. Currently NBC|Universal owns the rights to Blood Drive. Two producers are attempting to purchase back some or all of these rights and shop season two around to other buyers. Fingers crossed.
After a year and a half of trying, my management team was unable to secure the rights to Blood Drive. This is a big blow to us. Ultimately, NBC|Universal agreed to let us buy back the rights to season two only while also “lending” us the use of the three characters who would cross over into the second season. So while this wasn’t a hard and fast “no” it might as well have been. After 18 months the brand recognition faded plus who would buy the second season of a TV show without the rights to air the original first season?
Not gonna lie, this really sucks and it doesn’t bode well for the future of the show, especially since it’s not available on a viable streaming format.
Q: Why isn’t the show available on Netflix?
A: In a weird, roundabout way Netflix is kinda the reason there’s no second season. Basically, while Blood Drive had low ratings and only reached a niche audience, there were lower-rated shows on Syfy that lasted longer. The real reason we got cancelled was because the show wasn’t sold to “second window.” Which is an industry term that means where you air the re-runs, and it’s how the studio makes the bulk of its money back. Nowadays it primarily means Netflix, Hulu, or Amazon Prime … but mostly Netflix. And while I’ve never been able to get a direct answer as to WHY it didn’t sell to Hulu or Amazon Prime, apparently the show deeply offended someone high up at Netflix and they refused to buy it (this is technically hearsay, but I’ve heard it from multiple sources so there seems to be some kind of truth to it). Without that second window revenue, Syfy canceled the show. Weirdly, there’s no better indie punk-rock ending for a show like Blood Drive than pissing off a major corporation. But I sure wish we could make another season.
Q: Will the show ever stream anywhere?
A: Technically, the show is available on iTunes and Amazon but you have to pay per episode. It’s also available on Syfy.com, but that streaming service is clunky and not a great viewing experience. There is some hope we’ll be part of the content on the new Universal streaming service that’s been announced for 2020, but we don’t know for sure. We’re also in the process of trying to get some Shudder love, we’ll keep you posted.
Q: What was season two going to be about? Did everyone die in that tower?
A: Season two wasn’t going to be called Blood Drive, it was going to be called Blood Rock and take place on that island you saw at the end of season one. A handful of familiar characters would be in season two, but maybe not who or how you’d expect. It was in many way a brand new story that took place in the same universe. Instead of a race taking us into different grindhouse sub-genres it was a bunch of grindhouse sub-genres all crammed into a prison island. As for who lived and died in Heart Tower? Not gonna say anything other than death is real in the world of Blood Drive … but that doesn’t mean if you die your story has to end.
Q: Will there be a blu-ray or DVD release of Blood Drive?
A: Yes, there is currently a blu-ray set released by an Australian company called ViaVision Entertainment (and I think they’ve done a DVD set as well but I’m not sure). It’s available online. Despite what online retailers might say, the discs are REGION FREE and you can play them on hardware around the world. I’ve got a copy and they work great.
Q: What kind of special features are on the blu-ray/DVD?
A: As near as I can tell, none. I spoke with ViaVision directly and they’ve only purchased the license to the actual show, not any extra content. So unfortunately those awesome character videos and fake commercials won’t be included. However, you can find them online on the Syfy YouTube page.
Q: ALL of the fake commercials?!
A: Actually, no. The SMAX commercial (episode 104) as well as the commercials for the board game, Bladenado, and action figures (episode 111) will be included in the blu-ray because they were scripted and actually shot as part of the show. All the other fake commercials were produced by NBC|Universal as supplemental material.
Q: Will there be a special edition blu-ray in the future?
A: I hope so, though I hope it’s clear that if we DO manage to make a collector’s edition it’s not just some money grab to get fans to buy a second set. The current blu-ray was made without my knowledge or involvement. ViaVision thought the show was cool and reached out to NBC|Universal directly. I don’t know why the special features were not part of the deal they made.
Q: What kind of features can we expect?
A: In addition to what’s online, while in production in South Africa we also filmed two other pieces of additional content, including a fun short film where The Gentleman reads a fucked-up bedtime story to The Scholar and an assortment of cast interviews done in character. I’ve seen edits of these, and they were fucking great, but for some reason Syfy never used them. We also shot a TON of Behind the Scenes footage and crew interviews, but all of that is owned by NBC|Universal. If we get to do a collector’s edition my hope is that all of that content would be included. In the meantime, I happen to know there’s a bootleg video floating around the interwebs that contains the BTS showreel — about an hour long I think — that we played at our wrap party back in 2016. Ask around to your fellow Bleeders, one of them should have the link.