Since AMC’s zombie survival drama “The Walking Dead” premiered, it’s had no trouble finding an audience, drawing more than 12 million viewers. Despite its success, however, the show has had definite trouble keeping a showrunner on staff.
Two months after the second showrunner Glen Mazzara announced that he would be leaving “The Walking Dead,” AMC has announced that “Ghost Rider 2” author and series contributor Scott Gimple will be taking his place as head of the show’s production.
“I’m thrilled to continue the tradition of the spectacular, cinematic, horrifying, exciting and emotional storytelling of ‘The Walking Dead.’ I’m a huge fan of the comics, and started with the show on the other side of the set, as an avid viewer," Gimple told TV Line. "Over the past two years, it’s been an incredible privilege making such great television with the best cast and crew I’ve ever worked with – I can’t wait to make some more.”
Robert Kirkman, creator of the "Walking Dead" comics and a producer on the show, has nothing but kind words for Gimple’s promotion to showrunner.
“Scott has been an essential part of this show since he came aboard at the very beginning of season two,” he told TV Line. “He’s contributed to guiding this show in a substantial way that has resulted in a lot of the key scenes and storylines fans have dubbed signature moments. I am thrilled to begin work on a brand new season of 'The Walking Dead' with Scott at the helm, and I truly believe we could be embarking on what will be the best season of this show yet.”
When “The Walking Dead” premiered in October 2010, series developer Frank Darabont was named showrunner. Darabont, who wrote and directed the first episode, was let go by AMC at the end of the first season, reportedly due to budget struggles and a tenuous relationship with AMC.
Soon after Darabont’s departure, Mazzara stepped up to the plate to head the second and third seasons, which saw “The Walking Dead’s” ratings reach great heights. Then, in December, before the second half of the third season had premiered, Mazzara announced that he would be leaving. While the true nature of Mazzara’s departure has not been revealed, Paste magazine reports that it is related to a “difference of opinion.”
Here’s hoping that Gimple stays on longer than either of his predecessors.