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Mad Men Without Matt Weiner?

March 30, 2011

Currently, AMC and Lionsgate are locked in contract negotiations with Mad Men creator Matt Weiner. The major sticking point is reducing production costs by jettison some of its bloated ensemble cast. (Please don’t send them over to Grey’s Anatomy!) Might I suggest ditching Pete and Peggy! Just sayin’. Now, if Weiner can’t come to an agreement AMC and Lionsgate could go forward with production of the stylish, Emmy-winning series without its creator. Now before you clutch your vintage 50s pearls in horror, it might not come to this.

Perhaps it’s just typical game of negotiation chicken. Moreover, it’s not as though most fans watch the show because of its creator anyway. Given that the show is going into its fifth season perhaps AMC and Lionsgate are betting the show is so well oiled it could practically run itself. If the unthinkable were to happen it wouldn’t be the first showrunner to be ousted by studio. Let’s look some other examples.

    The West Wing – Whether it was Sorkin’s catfight with TWoP or arrest for drug possession or his general douchebaggery that led to his departure from the series he created, (wiki says it was an internal conflict with Warner Bros), but the show continued for what seemed like three hundred years without him. He did show up in the series finale. I bet that must have made everyone warm and cozy.

    ER – There was no bad blood; show creator Michael Crichton died in November of 2008. ER continued for another five months before ending its lengthy run. To be sure, it’s not clear how much actual day to day input Crichton had, but if you’ve ever been stuck on a long flight and read one of his girthy novels, you realize that ER was pure Crichton.

Ir remains to be seen whether the parties involved will come to a reasonable compromise. No doubt fans of the series – and I count myself as a casual fan, despite having seen every single episode – are wondering what all this means for the highly anticipated season five debut. It’s kind of assy of AMC and Lionsgate to make demands on Weiner who has put plenty of cashmoney in their pockets, and in AMC’s case, really put their channel on the map.

3 Comments leave one →
  1. March 30, 2011 3:31 pm

    Bye to Betty?
    I wish they’d done more with Helen Bishop and her creepy son. A Norman Bates in the making there.

  2. April 2, 2011 9:33 am

    The show isn’t coming back until 2012! WTF?

    • April 4, 2011 2:08 pm

      I wonder what this delay is going to do to the show. More importantly, I want to update my mad men avatar and I can’t wait another year for the upgrades.

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