Not that it should come as any great shock to anyone familiar with how much of a wildfire hit AMC’s The Walking Dead is, but the network has officially greenlighted season four of the series, which tells the stories of survivors of a zombie apocalypse and their constant battle to stay alive.
What may come as a shocker, is that Glen Mazzara, the man who stepped in for creator Frank Darabont as showrunner when he was fired, is now also stepping down from his position.
Continue reading for more, as well as to read multiple statements from those involved in the show.
Once again, the development is directly influenced by AMC, who have gained a reputation for being very difficult to work for. Rumors famously had the network threatening the cast if they spoke negatively about the removal of Darabont, saying it’s a show where anyone can be killed off easily…and some were, though its unclear whether that was the reason or not.
According to a statement released by AMC and Mazzara, the two parties disagreed on what direction the show should go in, and agreed that it was time to part ways. This same reason made fans very nervous in regard to the Darabont situation, wondering if they were trying to force the show to go in a bad direction, or maybe minimize the fantastic (yet pricy) practical effects that make it so great. One can only wonder if we’ll find out that Mazzara too was fired.
Fortunately for us, when Mazzara took over, he stepped in and not only kept using great practical effects, but also moved the storylines into more faithful waters, closer to what comic creator Robert Kirkman‘s original books offered. Now all we can do is hold our collective breaths once again and hope the show stays the course and continues to blow us away, despite all the dysfunction clearly going on behind the scenes.
Here’s the joint statement from AMC and Mazzara:
“Both parties acknowledge that there is a difference of opinion about where the show should go moving forward, and conclude that it is best to part ways. This decision is amicable and Glen will remain on for post-production on season 3B as showrunner and executive producer… AMC is grateful for his hard work. We are both proud of our shared success.”
And here’s Mazzara’s thoughts on the matter:
“My time as showrunner on The Walking Dead has been an amazing experience, but after I finish season 3, it’s time to move on. I have told the stories I wanted to tell and connected with our fans on a level that I never imagined. It doesn’t get much better than that. Thank you to everyone who has been a part of this journey.”
Here’s a statement released by Robert Kirkman:
“I am in full support of both AMC and Glen Mazzara in the decision they have come to and believe the parties came to this decision in the best interest of the future of the show. I thank Glen for his hard work and appreciate his many contributions to The Walking Dead and look forward to working with him as we complete post production on Season 3. I am also excited to begin work on another spectacular season of this show that I know means so much to so many people. This show has always been the result of a wide range of extremely talented men and women working tirelessly to produce their best work collectively. I believe the future is bright for The Walking Dead. Thank you to the fans for your continued support.”
Finally, here’s producer Gale Anne Hurd’s thoughts:
“I am appreciative and grateful to Glen for his hard work on The Walking Dead. I am supportive of AMC and Glen’s decision and know that the series is in great hands with one of the most talented and dedicated casts and crews in the business. I look forward to the show’s continued success.”
This also isn’t the only AMC show with issues such as these. AMC lops off more showrunner heads than Henry himself. But still, they air some of the best shows on TV. You have to wonder if they truly know what they’re doing, albeit with am iron fist, or if they just have that many ultra-talented folks working on their shows, ready to step in and run things when called on.
What do you think of AMC losing yet ANOTHER showrunner?