Late last year, Frank Darabont made headlines by giving the axe to his writing staff on The The Walking Dead, the critically acclaimed AMC show that took viewers by surprise and became a ratings juggernaut. It was also rumored that he would be assigning writing duties to freelancers, though that turned out not to be the case.
In a recent interview with Deadline, Darabont finally shed some light on the situation, which he said was “all pretty overblown.”
“It left the impression that I walked in one day and murdered 12 people. Would you like to know how many writers we were talking about? Two. My thought had been that they’d under-delivered, and a change was necessary. I had to do too much of it by myself last year, and that was only six episodes. This season, it’s 13 and we’ve hired a fantastic writing staff. We hired Glen Mazzara as our Number Two in the room. We consider him our head writer and he’s just a fantastic asset. We’ve also got three other staff writers in Scott Gimple, Evan Reilly from Rescue Me, and Angela Kang. Plus Executive Producer Robert Kirkman, who wrote the original comic book, is also writing for us.”
He also chatted about the direction his new writing staff would be talking, saying “It’s fair to say that the first six episodes were teeing up a lot of conflicts that will be more fully explored in our second season. We find a growing conflict with our two main guys, Rick [Andrew Lincoln] and Shane [Jon Bernthal]. We’re really excited about putting all of the characters on a chessboard and seeing how wonderfully and effectively we can toss conflict into the game.”
Get ready for the new season in October; it’s closer than you think.