Way back in December some controversial news broke that the entire writing staff for AMC’s hit new zombie series, The Walking Dead, had been fired. At the time, it sounded like showrunner Frank Darabont, who acts as a writer, director, and producer on the series, was having to do so many rewrites and make so many adjustments, it simply wasn’t worth having an entire writing staff. Instead, they would likely be hiring out freelance writers to handle the 13 episodes of the second season, one of which looked like it might be none other than Stephen King.
Now that you’re all caught up, delete most of that information from your memories. The Hollywood Reporter was able to have a little chat with The Walking Dead comic book creator Robert Kirkman, who set the record straight on the topic and offered some minor details to where things stand now with the show.
Of the firings, Kirkman was asked if they would have a full writing staff or if it would be freelancers, as was reported. He replied that they had a full staff and one freelancer, and that all that talk of everyone being fired “never really happened.” Kirkman shared that he, Darabont, and new producer Glen Mazzara were working on the show, and their full-time writers consisted of Evan Reilly (Rescue Me), Scott Gimple (FlashForward) and Angela Kang (Terriers).
On the other hand, all of these writers are new to the show (according to IMDB, anyway), and season 1 writers like Charlie Adlard and Tony Moore — along with Darabont and Kirkman — are all credited with working on the 19 episodes that will exist once season 2 has ended. This leaves the whole “firing” thing as sort of an unexplained mystery of sorts, but really, who cares so long as the show is as good as it can be, right?
Moving on — Mr. Kirkman also shared when he hopes season 2 of The Walking Dead will begin production. He says all scripts are completed (now that we know they kept the full writing staff) and that they could be back in Atlanta filming within the next few weeks.
The interview also asked about whether or not Stephen King writing an episode was still possible, which of course many fans want to see. Kirkman answered cautiously with subtle hints, saying:
That’s been discussed a little bit. Everyone involved on both sides of that are very anxious to make that happen; AMC is excited; Frank Darabont is excited; I’m excited. I know Stephen King and Joe Hill are excited. We’ll see if we can make that come together. I can neither confirm nor deny. (Laughs.)
This means King’s contribution sounds very likely. The question now is whether it would be for season 3, given Kirkman’s confirmation that all scripts for season 2 are already completed, or that he has already written it and the official announcement is yet to come.