Glen Mazzara Talks Season 2 and Future of The Walking Dead

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Muy Mareado! here and it was a great privilege to speak to show runner Glen Mazzara of The Walking Dead. I along with a few other representatives from various outlets was able to participate in a conference call with him to discuss Season 2 and what’s to come for season 3. You can find our review for the season finale HERE! Due to my name and accent, some things were noted as “unintelligible”! None the less, it was an experience and I will present some of the Q & A provided. Some of the questions and his answers were shortened.

 

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Q: What can we expect from Michonne in Season 3?

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Denai Guerrera to play Michonne (Photo by Zap2It)

Mazzara: Michonne is one of the lead characters in the graphic novel, so we’re excited to finally introduce her. She is a loner. She’s a kick ass character. She’s very dynamic and we really see her as a very, very important addition to the cast. She’s a significant character and she’ll be carrying a lot of story, so we’re excited about her.

We’re also excited about (Denai Guerrera) who is the young actress who is going to play this role, so we’re lucky to have her and look forward to seeing what she does with it.

 

Q: Are there plans to get T-Dog having some momentum in the story for Season 3?

Mazzara: You know what? The T-Dog question, I’m glad you’re asking that. I’ve been surprised at this because I’ve worked on shows before that have had characters in the background and have been on a slow burn.

With T-Dog, I’ll admit, T-Dog has been off to the side and has been forgotten. And part of my goal as show runner was to really address developing Rick’s character and some other stuff…I think (Irony Singleton) has done a fantastic job of establishing a character and making people interested in him with just very, very little to say…. So that’s a fair question and, you know, we haven’t done our work yet with T-Dog but we’re going to roll up our sleeves and get to it.

Q: Do you see the prison (arc) as something being wrapped up within the entirety of the 16 episode Season 3 or could that go on beyond?

Mazzara: That’s a great question. Right now I do see that prison as a significant storyline for Seasons 3 and Season 4. I do think that’s a major story line. You know, and I know we were on the farm for longer than perhaps people wanted. There were reasons for that.

So I do think that prison is a significant storyline. But we’re interested also in opening up the world. You know, the governor has a world of (Woodbury). There are other factors out there in the world, other groups. So I think that Rick’s group is really stumbling into a much larger world.

 

Q: I was wondering if in the back of your mind you had any additional comments, characters or storylines you’d like to tackle at some point?

Mazzara: Oh, well, certainly. I mean, there’s a lot of great material from the comic book and we see, you know, this show would have to go on 20 years to get to all of it. I think the (Tyreese) character is someone that we’re interested in introducing at some point.

You know, we still have Morgan and Duane out there from the pilot. We’re interested in them. So there’s — and there’s new characters that will be original to the series not coming straight form the comic book. So we are really, you know, I think I said yesterday to someone that I think Season 1 and 2 have been prologue and now it feels like we’re hitting the ground running.

Q: Is it safe to say that in Season 3 fans can expect to see the zombies take a back seat to a potential human threat as the episodes progress?

Mazzara: No, that would not be fair. Zombies will never take a back seat, okay. We will always have the human drama and we would like to introduce a significant human threat.

But we love writing the zombie material and I think those zombies are now fully integrated into the world. We’re not waiting for the zombies anymore to reach us. They are there. They are within, you know, in our eyesight, you know, all the time. They are, you know, part of the landscape.

Q: I wanted to know if the introduction of Michonne is going to signal potentially a little bit more of kind of the fantastical, sort of comic graphic novel feels of the actual graphic novel particularly with her being so kind of dramatically cloaked.

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Mazzara: You know what? That’s a great question. That’s a great question and, you know, let’s be honest. The reason that the character’s cloaked at the end was because we had not cast the actress, okay. So that is a cheat there.

So I do think that that’s an interesting character. She comes from the comic book. She feels like she stepped off those pages into the show. I think that’s exciting. That’s a challenge for us but, you know, knowing me as a writer, I think I’m going to, you know, keep it real, keep it grounded because if it doesn’t feel real I think the audience will not be able to put themselves in the immediate circumstances of the story.

 

Muy Mareado!: In a sense for story lines and characters as far as the comics go, would you want to continue on for what he (Kirkman) has already established or was there anything that you wanted to do differently?

Mazzara: I love (Robert)’s material and I think that if anything, by introducing the possibility of the prison, by introducing Michonne and by, you know, obviously everyone knows we’ve cast the governor.

So I think we’re interested that we have to do it our way so that it really still feels, you know, realistic and gritty and grounded, as I just answered in the previous question. But I’m interested in getting a little closer to some of the stuff (Robert) has because I just think it’s worthwhile. It’s just great source material.

Q: Did you have any moments that you really enjoyed writing for Season 2, favorite episodes or scenes?

Mazzara: That is a great question. You know, I don’t know. It’s not a holy shit moment but you know what I think is really a wonderful scene that just kind of came out is where — in (Better Angels), Rick hands (Carl) the gun and he’s talking about — he says I wish I had something more profound to say.

You know, Rick’s opening up about his past there and that his son is not going to have the kind of life that he had. So that was kind of an intricate scene that was really beautifully photographed by (Ron Schmidt) and (Guy Ferland) and well-acted by (Chandler) and (Andy).

 

Q: How do you guys deal with sort of protecting the story lines and dealing with leaks?

 Mazzara: We want to really improve that. Leaks have been a problem and that is something that we take very seriously and also just the huge amount of attention that the show has — gets has been new territory for me.

So we actually internally have a security task force led by (Gale Anne Herd) and (Robert)’s on that and (Scott Kimple), who’s very computer savvy. AMC takes this stuff very seriously.

 

Q: Any desire yourself to sit in the makeup chair and become zombified and stumble around in the background?

 Mazzara: Yes, I would love to do that. Unfortunately, I would probably be horrible at it and get fired Day 1 because I am a terrible actor. But I do want to do that. I think — how could I not? I’d be crazy not to. That’ll be fun. So I certainly do it.

I was also thinking of doing it for maybe TCA but I thought that would be hard to explain. So we’ll see what happens.

 

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Merle Dixon, portrayed by Michael Rooker

Q: Is there any chance we’re going to be seeing Merle again soon?

Mazzara: Merle is still out there and, yes, I’m excited to — figuring out what to do with him. So I would say he’s on the horizon.

 

Q: I’m actually going to go to a completely different subject here and ask about the infection. I think that that is just a horrifying detail for everyone to have to take in. Is that going to be explored at all in the next season, the effect of this?

Mazzara:   Well, certainly. I mean, that’s something that, you know, will continue to play. I mean, let’s be honest, you know, (Andrea) does not have that information, which is interesting. And it’s something that I think is now a new element to play with.

You know, we’re not really interested in going back and explaining how the infections started or having a lot of science fiction elements talking about finding a cure or that sort of stuff. You know, that’s not part of (Robert)’s work. That’s not something that’s part of the working demographic novel.

So that is material we’ll probably stay away from. It’s a question of how do our characters deal with this knowledge? What does that mean? You know, I’m sure Lori is wrestling with question about, you know, what happens if she dies in childbirth?

 

It was such a great conference call and it was funny hearing the questions about the dislike of Lori and the lack of T-Dog. My friends and I even made up a drinking game for whenever we saw and heard T-Dog speak. The end result: no one was drunk.

Stay tuned for more news on Season 3 of The Walking Dead.

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Source : Comic Book Therapy