Only days after appearing with the Walking Dead panel at SDCC, Frank Darabont, has stepped down as 'show runner'. Deadline reported that is is unclear if he will stay on the show in some capacity or not... More...
The news is even more surprising given the fact that Darabont was on hand for Walking Dead's Comic-Con panel just this past Friday alongside fellow executive producers Robert Kirkman, on whose graphic novel the series is based, and Gale Anne Hurd and appeared excited about Season 2. There is speculation that Darabont might be off the show completely, but I hear talks are still ongoing about him possibly staying on in some capacity. Darabont, who spent five years trying to get a TV version of the zombie saga off the ground and wrote and directed the AMC pilot, hails from the feature world, and I hear that he never quite adjusted to the daily grind of producing a TV series. Last December, he considered forgoing a writing staff for Season 2 and assigning scripts to freelancers but ultimately went for the traditional writing staff model recommended by the network and tapped Glen Mazzara as an executive producer and his No. 2. It is unclear if The Shield alum Mazzara, who has showrunning experience, would now step in to run Walking Dead. I hear that the behind-the-scenes turmoil has not affected production on the show, which continues as scheduled.
It's uncertain why Darabont -- whose other credits include screenwriter and director for 1994's "The Shawshank Redemption," and writer and producer of 1999's "The Green Mile" -- vacated the showrunner role.
It's also unclear as to whether he will stay on as executive producer for the series, which he created.
Darabont's decision to step down as showrunner comes as a surprise, as he had just appeared at the Comic-Con panel for the series on Friday, with fellow executive producer Robert Kirkman and series stars Andrew Lincoln, John Bernthal and Sarah Wayne Callies.
It's also not yet clear who will replace Darabont as showrunner.