If you thought it was bad news when Frank Darabont was relieved of his duties as showrunner on The Walking Dead, it turns out you were right. A new story in THR reveals that Darabont's departure was far from harmonious, and that AMC is going so far as to threaten cast members from talking out in favor of their departed leader.
Per a source to the trade magazine, the cast is being "terrorized" by AMC. "They're scared," says another source. "They're on a zombie show. They are all really easy to kill off."
Apparently, AMC soured on Darabont for a number of reasons: he was slow to complete episodes, not happy with the budget reductions that the network proposed for season two, and unwilling to make concessions to the narrative (like filming episodes at more interior locations, for instance). All this led to his ouster, though Sons of Anarchy showrunner Kurt Sutter has one other reason for the divorce.
"Why Darabont got fired - [Matthew] Weiner," he wrote on Twitter. "He held AMC hostage, broke their bank, budgets were slashed, shit rolled down hill onto [Vince] Gilligan and Frank." (You'll recall that AMC had a similarly acrimonious public battle over Breaking Bad recently.)
"No one else wants to fucking say it, but the greed of Mad Men is killing the other two best shows on TV."