BREAKING… UPDATED: The announcement was made at the conclusion of The Walking Dead‘s world premiere trailer (see it below) for Season 4 just shown at Comic-Con. AMC will premiere the new season of its zombie drama October 13 at 9 PM. “Things are going to get crazier,” promised exec producer Robert Kirkman of the series’ fall return, which sees the survivors thrown together and hunkered down inside the prison. Andrew Lincoln’s Rick will find himself in a new emotional state after going sociopath last season. “He’s trying to repress his brutality and he’s renounced quite a number of responsibilities in terms of the leadership, for the sake of his children,” said Lincoln.
The panel’s sprawling lineup led by Kirkman and new showrunner Scott Gimple went deep into discussion of the emotional toll survival has taken on The Walking Dead‘s living. “No one goes unscathed,” remarked Chad Coleman who added that “eventually, a can of whoopass might be opened.” Even David Morrissey, whose villainous Governor ended last season with a brutal bloodbath, empathized with the pressures weighing on his character’s mind. “At the end of last season he was in a very dark place,” he said, drawing fans’ laughter with the understatement of the hour. “He went after all but two of his people. He didn’t kill them all! Give him a break.” READ MORE »
Comic-Con has released Day 1 of its 2013 schedule. As usual, the convention is releasing its schedule one day at a time. Stay tuned for the Friday, Saturday and Sunday schedules later this week.
Opening-day highlights abound, including a 10th anniversary tribute to The Walking Dead comic with writer Robert Kirkman, South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone discussing their upcoming video game South Park: The Stick of Truth, and a panel titled Video Games to Movies: Is The Golden Age Upon Us?
There’s lots of TV in the Thursday spotlight, including sessions dedicated to such shows as Dexter, Sherlock — sans stars Benedict Cumberbatch and Martin Freeman — the 35th anniversary of Battlestar Galactica and Annoying Orange. Among the dozens of panels are several geared toward making it in the business, including Marvel: Breaking Into Comics the Marvel Way, The Secrets of Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy, The Writer’s Journey: Breaking Into Hollywood and Comic Scriptwriting, Breaking Into Comics and Staying In, and Indie Comics Marketing and PR 101. There also are programs on such potentially intriguing topics as Toys 101: An Evolution of the Modern Action Figure, The Legendary Animators of Classic ’60s Cartoons, Video Gaming: Where We’ve Been, Where We Are and Where We’re Going, and – especially — Not Guilty Due to Zombification? Law and Forensic Psychiatry in a Zombie Apocalypse.
See the complete opening-day rundown after the jump:
Comic-Con: Marvel, Sony To Present Tentpole Sequels
Comic-Con: AMC, New Showrunner To Preview ‘Walking Dead’ Season 4
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Expect a packed Comic-Con house later this month for AMC‘s The Walking Dead, which broke ratings records with April’s Season 3 finale. The zombie series is returning to Comic-Con for the fourth … Read More »
Michael Ausiello is Editor-in-Chief of TVLine.
If there were an Emmy category for rawness, Andrew Lincoln wouldn’t just be under consideration for a nomination, he’d be the frontrunner for the win. The work the actor did on AMC’s The Walking Dead this past season as grieving Sheriff Rick Grimes felt so real that, at times, it was difficult to watch. (He didn’t even watch himself!) Here, the 39-year-old Englishman opens up about how he approached his widowed character’s breakdown and whether he thinks Emmy voters will be able to overcome their genre bias to give him and his hit cable series a chance.
AwardsLine: It was such an intense season for you. How did you recover and wind down after playing all of that rage and desolation?
Andrew Lincoln: It is a brutal and dark place you have to inhabit, but I’m very good at disengaging. And there’s no better way to unplug than having children. Changing diapers is one of the most leveling things that has ever happened to me. Realizing that my children are the center of the universe and not me is probably one of the greatest ways to acclimatize.
AwardsLine: Your former leading lady, Sarah Wayne Callies (who plays Lori, his TV wife), told me last fall, “When Andrew goes down the rabbit hole, he goes all the way down.” What did she mean exactly?
Lincoln: I love acting. I just love it. It’s in my bones. I remember when I was a kid, I watched an interview with Dennis Hopper talking about Jimmy Dean on the set of Rebel Without A Cause. Jimmy said to him, “If you’ve got to cry in a scene, you’ve got to cry. Make it real.” And that’s all that I believe in. Read More »
Thomas J. McLean is an AwardsLine contributor.
For sound editors and mixers, the broadening of TV’s audio palette into feature-film territory requires a lot of work and plenty of tricks to get shows to sound as good as they look on tight budgets and even tighter schedules. “I spend quite a bit of time trying to find the right people who can do feature-quality work but not take feature time,” says Tim Kimmel, supervising sound editor on HBO’s epic fantasy series Game Of Thrones. With 10 hourlong episodes to complete in about five months and a tight schedule on the production pipeline, work often continues until the last minute. “By the time we finish mixing the show, we’re still waiting on final visual effects, so we will end up going back into episodes that were basically completed,” Kimmel explains. Read More »
Ray Richmond is contributing to Deadline’s conference coverage.
The Walking Dead exec producer Gale Anne Hurd admitted this afternoon that one of the hazards of her job is receiving death threats from the rabid fan base of smash hit AMC zombie drama when it dares to kill off a character. “That’s one of the dirty little secrets of social media,” she admitted during a session at the Produced By conference on the Fox lot. “The fans so identify with the characters that if you kill them off… well, first they’re in denial. It’s really the stages of grief. They say, ‘That gunshot off camera, they aren’t really dead, they’re coming back.’ And then they get angry. They threaten to hunt you down. They don’t understand the difference between reality and fantasy.”
For the most part, however, the experience of being the highest-rated drama in cable history is a far more rewarding and less dangerous experience, Hurd and her fellow panelists agreed. She was joined at the event by Walking Dead exec producer David Alpert; Sharon Tal Yguado, EVP of global scripted programming and original development for Fox International Channels; and Marci Wiseman, SVP of business affairs for AMC. They discussed the how the show originally and famously was rejected at the pilot stage by NBC. Alpert recalled how when the comic book rights were sold to NBC in 2005, the network told him, “We want to do something totally different.” He remembered, “When they passed, I said, ‘But I thought you wanted to do something totally different.’ They said, ‘We do. We just don’t want to do a zombie show.’ That was one of the more frustrating things.” Read More »
AMC today put out the first photo from The Walking Dead Season 4. Here’s a look at Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes back to work on the set in Atlanta. But who is that standing in the shadows? Production on Season 4 began Monday. The Walking Dead‘s … Read More »
EXCLUSIVE: Glen Mazzara, who ran AMC’s smash hit series The Walking Dead for the past several seasons, will now focus on ghosts. He’s in talks to write The Overlook Hotel, a prequel to the Stanley Kubrick-directed The Shining, based on the Stephen King novel. The film is being developed at Warner Bros to be produced by Mythology Entertainment’s Bradley Fischer, James Vanderbilt and Laeta Kalogridis.
While King wasn’t crazy about the Kubrick movie, there are so many iconic images in that movie, and an outsized performance by Jack Nicholson, that this will be a tough act to follow. Mazzara is an interesting choice. He succeeded Frank Darabont on The Walking Dead, and while it seemed he clashed with graphic novel creator Robert Kirkman — he was dropped as showrunner in December — I think he did a fabulous job in moving forward and giving context to what Darabont started. I’ve never seen a series quite like it, and there are plenty of ghostly nuggets from the formative days of that haunted hotel that were dropped in the book and the Kubrick movie that make me eager to see what Mazzara does with this prequel. Read More »
UPDATE, 3 PM: How did AMC get wrong what networks air The Voice and Modern Family in its full-page The Walking Dead ad that ran in today’s New York Times? It was the undead’s fault, says the network. “It appears our fact checking department was overrun … Read More »
UPDATE: In response to questions about the status of The Walking Dead‘s Melissa McBride, who was not among the four promoted to regular, the actress confirmed on Twitter that she is already a regular on the show. So that is that.… Read More »
There’s so much current programming that’s available for free from online pirates that it “could put the whole [pay TV] ecosystem at risk,” Macquarie Equities Research’s Tim Nollen warns today. His report follows what he says was a “quick and dirty Google search” to see what he could find. To his surprise “practically everything that’s popular on TV can be found instantly” from torrent sites such as The Pirate Bay and cyberlockers listed in Letmewatchthis.com. For example, he found episodes of FX’s Justified, TNT’s Dallas, AMC’s The Walking Dead, History’s Vikings, and CBS’ The Big Bang Theory less than three hours after they aired. He also was surprised by how slick some of these sites have become. “In terms of usability, it’s difficult to tell the difference between iTunes or Netflix and the smoothest-looking illegitimate sites.” About 70% of U.S. homes have broadband service, giving them the ability to download an hourlong show in about 42 seconds — and lots of people already use that power to watch shows for free. Pirate Bay is more popular among U.S. Internet users than sites from The Washington Post, Best Buy, and dating service Match.com. Read More »
Three months after his highly publicized exit from AMC’s The Walking Dead, former Walking Dead executive producer/showrunner Glen Mazzara has launched his own production company, 44 Strong Prods, and has signed an overall deal with Fox TV Studios. Under the pact, Mazzara will develop cable series through 44 Strong — named after his address in Brooklyn, 44 Strong Place — and will shepherd other writers on their own shows. It reunites the writer-producer with FtvS, the studio behind FX’s The Shield, where Mazzara spent six seasons. “The Shield was the show that really put FtvS on the map, and Glen was a huge part of that show’s success,” FtvS president David Madden said. “Years later, Glen has become a lauded and expert showrunner, and after his extraordinary stint on The Walking Dead, we are proud to bring Glen back home.” Added Mazzara, “I’ve had a long history with Fox Television Studios… This is where I want to be, and I couldn’t ask for a better partner as I take the next step in my career.” Read More »
Ross Lincoln is a Deadline Contributor.
Diehard zombie fans were out in force for the first night of PaleyFest 2013 thanks to the festival-opening The Walking Dead panel moderated by Nerdist impressario and Talking Dead host Chris Hardwick. Perhaps that’s why Hardwick erred on the side of devoted fanboy rather than penetrating interviewer, giving the event more of a Comic-Con panel feel. Cast members Andrew Lincoln (Rick), Dania Gurira (Michonne), Laurie Holden (Andrea), Scott Wilson (Hershel), Emily Kinney (Beth), Norman Reedus (Daryl), and Steven Yeun (Glenn) were joined by series creator and executive producer Robert Kirkman and his co-executive producers Gale Anne Hurd, Greg Nicotero and David Alpert for a occasionally salty, consistently hilarious discussion that avoided any hint of controversy.
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AMC today made official The Walking Dead supervising producer Scott M. Gimple‘s promotion to executive producer and showrunner for Season 4, replacing Glenn Mazzara. Additionally, co-executive producer, Emmy-winning Special Effects … Read More »
The stunt was pulled Monday night, when somebody with maybe too much The Walking Dead on the brain hacked into two Montana TV stations’ Emergency Alert System to warn of a real zombie apocalypse. The admittedly authentic-looking … Read More »
You could call her the Queen of the Dead. Walking Dead executive producer Gale Anne Hurd has been with the AMC zombie apocalypse show from the very beginning, through its behind the scenes up and downs and its record breaking ratings results this past year. After a more than two-month break, The Walking Dead is back Sunday for eight more episodes of its third season. Hurd spoke with Deadline about the show’s return, the sudden exit last year of showrunner Glen Mazzara and how Dead comic creator and show EP Robert Kirkman feels about the detours the series takes from the comics. The seasoned producer also talks about the possibility of a Walking Dead movie and the similarities between her show and its fellow Sunday night airer Downton Abbey.
Deadline: I have to ask right off the bat – What happened with Glen Mazzara?
Gale Anne Hurd: Essentially with the series moving forward, he saw Season 4 in a different light than AMC did.
Deadline: OK. That’s very similar to what he has said. With Glen having left, are we are going to see any difference in the show with Scott Gimple taking over the showrunner job?
Hurd: I don’t think there will be any difference. We have the same writers’ room who’ll be contributing to all the episodes as we had before. We have Greg Nicotero and Robert Kirkman and producer Dave Alpert are still very strong voices. So I don’t think you’ll see a shift at all.
Related: Glen Mazzara No-Show At ‘Walking Dead’ TV Academy Panel
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