Fernandez is behind some of Starz’s most popular original series, including horror-comedy “Ash vs Evil Dead” and Emmy-winning pirate epic “Black Sails,” which recently concluded its four-season run. As Starz’s programming becomes increasingly ambitious—check out the stunning first season of “American Gods”—expect Fernandez to be a driving force behind that effort. That’s good news given her penchant for nuanced female characters. She cites Reese Witherspoon’s character in “Big Little Lies” as a current favorite. “It was refreshing to have this amazing female character who was, at times, completely unlikeable, but endlessly understandable,” she says.

Who is your favorite current female TV character and why?
Reese Witherspoon’s character in “Big Little Lies” (Madeline Mackenzie).  I love flawed characters and usually that honor goes to male protagonists, it was refreshing to have this amazing female character who was (at times) completely unlikeable, but endlessly understandable.

What industry topic do you think will dominate industry headlines in 2018 and why?
I think the conversation around gender parity when it comes to female showrunners and directors will continue to be a focal point. As more women (still not nearly enough) are getting these positions, they are going to be under an intense microscope, and their successes or failures will be the new talking points for the coming year. It’s a completely unfair system, but I think this is where we are heading.

What famous woman, living or deceased, would you like to have dinner with? 
I would love to have dinner with my paternal grandmother. She died when I was a teenager and I never made the effort to really get to know her, it’s one of my biggest regrets.

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