Several weeks have now transpired since Glen Mazzara was unceremoniously removed from his post as showrunner for “The Walking Dead,” but time does not necessarily heal all wounds. For more evidence of this, just see that he had to say while at NATPE (National Association of Television Program Executives) on Tuesday.
It was of course inevitable that the subject of Mazzara’s exit from the hit AMC series would come up, especially after he guided the show to new ratings high and critical acclaim; but as for a reason why he was removed of his post, he ultimately claimed that the ball was really in the network’s court to answer that one:
“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 [in Frank Darabont] 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,”
Mazzara actually may somehow still be underrated in that he took a show that was already popular, and found a way to make it better at a time when everyone was ready to rip AMC for getting rid of Darabont. The network was heavily-criticized then, and they are being heavily-criticized now once again now. “Sons of Anarchy” creator Kurt Sutter as well as Shawn Ryan, who both worked with Mazzara on “The Shield,” have each came out and suggested that showrunners looking for creative control should not look to sell their show to a network that likes to keep so much of the power in their hands.
Scott Gimple has already been hired to replace Mazzara, and for the time being, AMC is really doing nothing to address the change other than speaking in circles and wishing Glen well.