AMC today announced that The Walking Dead will be coming back for a fourth season, much to the surprise of, well, just about no one.
While that news may not be surprising, the network also had some rather shocking news to go along with the good – The Walking Dead will return without showrunner Glen Mazzara.
“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,” Mazarra said in a joint statement with AMC. “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.”
Mazzara’s departure, AMC explains in a press release, came down to a difference of opinion. Mazzara wanted to bring the show in one direction, while the network wanted another.
“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,” AMC said. “This decision is amicable and Glen will remain on for post-production on season 3B as showrunner and executive producer.”
If this all sounds familiar to you, that’s because something similar has happened before – although not quite as amicably. During season 2, The Walking Dead executive producer and creator Frank Darabont was suddenly fired from the show.
Robert Kirkman, creator of The Walking Dead, released a statement of his own in support of both parties.
“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,” Kirkman said. 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.”