“It might be time for fans to grow concerned.”
Alarming news for fans of Matthew Weiner ’87‘s critically acclaimed, Emmy-winning AMC drama (that includes basically all of Wesleyan, last I checked). Neither AMC, nor the show’s studio, Lionsgate, have announced a new deal for the show’s fifth season, which means the season may well not drop until late 2011, or 2012. Details are vague, but the disagreement involves “a very lucrative property, and who is going to pay for it to get made.”
More from the New York Times:
Mr. Weiner has said he wants the show to continue, and AMC has pledged that it will definitely return, so the delay is largely due to a disagreement about money. As Mr. Weiner told Entertainment Weekly in January, apparently referring to AMC and Lionsgate, “They are fighting over a very lucrative property, and who is going to pay for it to get made; it’s one of the biggest perils of success — everyone wants a piece of it now, and they are fighting over who is gonna get the biggest chunk.”
Money often causes strife between program creators and distributors, but rarely do the negotiations drag out this long.
[ . . . ]
“By now, the writing staff should be humming along, maybe about a month or more into work for a summer premiere,” he said. “Unless Weiner is secretly manufacturing outlines in preparation of some crazy all-night writing sessions with his staff, it might be time for fans to grow concerned.”
The negotiations put Mad Men actors, like John Slattery, in a position of uncertainty:
In the meantime “Mad Men” actors like John Slattery, who plays Roger Sterling, are in a bind, expecting that they will be called back to work but unsure when that call will come. While walking the red carpet at a premiere of his new film, “The Adjustment Bureau,” last month, Mr. Slattery remarked to reporters, “I’m looking for a job.”
Thankfully, the article concludes, Season Four comes out on DVD next week. It’s a tough replacement for new episodes of the show, but it’ll have to do.
Last we reported on Mad Men happenings, UC Berkeley was devoting a class to the course. You can read about that here, or read about the show’s Wes-related roots here.
As usual, the NYT’s coverage of Film and Television is far off the mark. No one wants the show to end; they’re just fighting over shares. Weiner wants a lot more money for this season, which is a major reason why the negotiations are protracted.