The Man in the High Castle Stops Production and Loses Its Showrunner

Friday, 20 May 2016 - 10:40AM
Sci-Fi Books
Friday, 20 May 2016 - 10:40AM
This might be a bad omen for Man in the High Castle. Amazon has just announced that Frank Spotnitz has stepped down as showrunner, which has led to a delay in production of the second season.

Here's the official announcement from Amazon:

Opening quote
Given the ambition and scope of the series, the decision has been made to locate all creative efforts on The Man in the High Castle to the west coast; Frank Spotnitz will remain as an Executive Producer and step back from showrunner. His responsibilities will be managed by our deep and talented bench of producers. We are enormously grateful to him for bringing our customers on one of the most watched original shows on Amazon Video and we are excited about the team's vision for season two.
Closing quote

Amazon's statement makes it sound like the decision was long in the works, and that Spotnitz will still be heavily involved. However, according to a report from Deadline, Spotnitz left the show abruptly after days of "clashes" with Amazon over production. And although we don't know for sure, it's pretty clear that this was a sudden decision, and not a great sign for the future of the show. It's always a bad sign when a showrunner leaves in the middle of the season, and to make matters worse, his departure has put production into "immediate hiatus." Deadline claims the delay could last for two weeks, and then production will continue, apparently without any showrunner at all, which I've never even heard of before. That could mean they just have a lot of confidence in their producers (no series is a one-man show, after all), but it could also mean they're scrambling.

It would be bad news for Amazon if The Man in the High Castle started suffering, as it has been one of the most critically acclaimed shows to come out of their original programming. They would still have critical darlings like Transparent and Mozart in the Jungle to fall back on, but hopefully they can get their prestige sci-fi show back on track.

The Man in the High Castle season 2 is expected to start streaming on Amazon later this year.
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