In only two short weeks, The Walking Dead will return to television, continuing the most thrilling season of the post-apocalyptic zombie TV series yet. But what will the future of the series be like when the new showrunner Scott Gimple takes charge? The Walking Dead goes through showrunners like Rick Grimes goes through a herd of zombies.
In a panel discussion, ex-Walking Dead showrunner Glen Mazzarra opened up about his AMC firing. Mazzara was the second showrunner for The Walking Dead in three years. He replaced the series first showrunner, Frank Darabont, in the middle of its second season. Mazzarra says:
When people involved with the show are looking at the long-term plan, you know, they want something different. And what those differences are, you’d have to ask AMC. I was a hired gun coming in to support the creator of the show and, through odd circumstances, I ended up becoming the showrunner. I was just glad that I was able to contribute and not mess up the show, I see that as a win … When you are the creator you can say this is what the show is. I didn’t create the show, I didn’t create the comic book so I was just glad I was able to contribute.
Mazzara sounds very reserved and professional. He could have easily badmouthed the cable network, but instead he showed a bit of class with his response. As much as Mazzara was integral to the recent success of The Walking Dead, the direction of the series is not his decision to make. For good or ill, The Walking Dead will always be the baby of its creator, Robert Kirkman.
After news broke that AMC was going to fire Glen Mazzara, word got out that Kirkman was responsible for the showrunner’s untimely exit. Considering the series’ past, Kirkman most likely was also responsible for Frank Darabont’s departure from the TV series in 2011.
The Walking Dead returns to TV on Sunday, February 10th, at 10PM EST on AMC.