The Walking Dead Gets A 4th Season, Loses Showrunner Glen Mazzara

Image courtesy AMC

Image courtesy AMCIt’s no secret that zombies are hot right now and the best place to see why is AMC’s intense take on the genre with their mega-hit The Walking Dead.  The show has been winning its time-slot and even defeating competition from broadcast networks so it comes as no surprise that it got picked up for a fourth season.  Before you start re-stringing your crossbows and sharpening your Katanas the news isn’t all rosy.  The Hollywood Reporter has said that along with that renewal comes the loss of showrunner Glen Mazzara.

THR also quotes AMC as saying the decision to have Mazzara depart is amicable:

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.

Mazzara seems to be in agreement based on a statement quoted by THR:

My time as showrunner on The Walking Dead has been an amazing experience, but after I finish season three, 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.

As most fans may already know, this isn’t the first showrunner to leave The Walking Dead.  Frank Darabont was showrunner for season one, but was let go after a rather public disagreement he had with the studio over budget cuts.  While the first half of season two was a bit tepid with Mazzara at the helm (Farmville, anyone?), the rest of that season was greatly improved and season three seems to be continuing in a very positive and intense direction.

Mazzara will remain on-board as showrunner and executive producer for the remainder of season three.  Thus far there has been no information on who might be a likely candidate for the position during season four, but THR is reporting that one of the show’s current writing staff may get promoted to the position of showrunner.

Robert Kirkman, creator of the comic book series and one of the producers of the show had good things to say about Mazzara and everyone who works on The Walking Dead in this quote from THR:

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 three.  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.

With the popularity and ratings of The Walking Dead at record-breaking levels, the renewal was practically a given.  No matter the situation it’s always good to get confirmation of a renewal since networks have been known on occasion to cancel shows that any reasonable person would expect to continue.  For now it looks like the only things dying on this show will be walkers and the occasional cast member.

AMC’s The Walking Dead Official Website

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