Frank Darabont Fires The Walking Dead’s Entire Writing Staff.
I like me some The Walking Dead. I like it despite Sunday’s episode being something resembling ass, and none of the episodes having been as good as the first two. So when it came out today that Frank Darabont has fired the entire fucking writing staff, I was momentarily happy. Darabont wrote the first two episodes, and this (theoretically) means he’ll be even more hands on for season two.
Deadline is reporting a rumor that director, writer and Walking Dead producer Frank Darabont has let the entire writing staff go. And instead of hiring a new staff for the second season, Darabont is toying with the idea of assigning freelancers to each script. While assigning freelancers to TV scripts isn’t anything new, canning the whole writing staff is pretty unusual, and we’re still weighing out the pros and cons of this executive decision.
Darabont penned the series pilot and the second episode solo, while co-writing and rewriting the remaining four episodes of Walking Dead’s first season. Two of the four episodes that Darabont didn’t write were created by “non-staffers” Glen Mazzara and original comic creator Robert Kirkman. So in reality, Darabont is already carrying the bulk of the writing work on his shoulders, so there may not be any need to blow the second season budget on an in-house writing staff.
That being said, the second season has a total of 13 episodes. That doubles the amount of time the production crew will have to spend under the boiling Atlanta sun filming the new episodes. Plus, whatever writer ends up tackling the new scripts, they’re going to be under a very tight schedule. And if Darabont wants to stay as heavily involved as he has been throughout season one (and it sounds like he does) it’s going to take double the effort to write, re-write, produce, shoot, and edit the new season. The burn out factor seems almost inevitable, even with the original comic book outline.
At this point, I’m more impressed than anything. By what? Just the headline. Dude fires the entire writing staff of the most acclaimed new show of the season. It’s not a particularly large staff, and he was already heavily involved, so it almost feels like more bluster and cost-saving than anything.
I don’t give a fuck who writes the episodes, as long as they’re enjoyable. If Darabont sending out assignments to freelancers and staying heavily involved will keep the quality up, let’s do it! Who knows though. I sure fucking don’t.