Now, Mazzara has come out to talk about what went down and how it will or won’t effect the show. Honestly, it’s one of the first decent sighs of relief that I’ve had about season 2 of ‘The walking Dead’ since this whole thing began. After reading through his entire article, the one thing that struck me most was his devotion to Darabont and to making sure that he isn’t the guy who goes down in history as the one responsible for ruining a great show.
On his conditions for accepting the position as showrunner:
” I did not accept the showrunner position until things were reconciled with Frank. Things that were in the press were not exactly accurate. I wanted Frank to be safe, to be settled out, what ever it is. Then my reps spoke with AMC and then I was made showrunner. I panicked. This is a beloved show with a strong fan base. I’ve run some very tricky shows in the past with big personalities and what if it turns out that I’m the guy who f—s up The Walking Dead? I’m dead in Hollywood. I was really fearful of that.”
“I was very candid that I was not making any changes; I was not deviating from the roadmap; I was not firing any producers; there was no agenda. I was just there to steady the course, to provide some stability at a moment of crisis. I reassured people that I was not letting anyone go. The show was going to stay the course. “
On inaccuracies in the press about Frank Darabont’s departure:
“I did not want to be disloyal in any way to Frank; I didn’t want to be seen as being disloyal. I realized that there was some chatter that this was somehow my coup… I owed it to Frank to be respectful that I was not going to pull and Al Haig and run on stage and say, ‘I’m in charge.’ I tried to be very respectful of that.”
On Changes that Mazzara will make from the road map he and Darabont laid out for season 2:
“I take these moments of deviation very seriously and I’m only deviating where I really feel that I’m then in my wheelhouse. If it’s a tie, I’ve been giving the tie to Frank.
Maybe I’m torturing myself over this but it’s important to me because when you first take over a show, especially a hit show that’s on a very public stage, those first few weeks were tough and I didn’t have my sea legs yet, so I was deferring to people around me and really getting input.”
On the split season:
” The season was always designed as two halves before a single word was written. I’ve read stuff on the Internet where people are saying, ‘The first half of the season is going to be Frank and the second half is going to be Glen. This doesn’t bode well.’ That’s all horseshit. I’ve been involved in every single episode; Frank has been involved in every episode to some degree creatively. [The split season theory] is not accurate. It’s always been designed as two halves for programming purposes because football is a monster and nobody wants to go up against my Giants. [Laughs.]”
He also wanted to make sure that everyone knows Frank Darabont will be given an executive Producer credit for every episode this season.
Check out the rest of the interview here:THR