Screenwriting fans of the AMC’s The Walking Dead will get the chance to learn from the series head zombie wrangler, Glen Mazzara, in a Marquee session at the Toronto Screenwriting Conference (TSC). Mazzara was the executive producer and showrunner of The Walking Dead for the second and third seasons, and has also penned for FX’s Golden Globe Award-winning police drama, The Shield. The TSC takes place at The Ted Rogers School of Management at Ryerson University on April 6 & 7, 2013.
“If there has ever been a series that screenwriters love and wait for with enthusiastic anticipation, it’s The Walking Dead. Glen Mazzara will offer great insight into showrunning one of the most successful and wildly popular series on TV today. Anyone who is serious about screenwriting will want to hear what he has to say about writing for TV drama,” said Heidi Tao Yang, Toronto Screenwriting Conference producer.
Glen Mazzara knew he wanted to be a writer at a young age but his career took an unconventional route to the writers room. While earning a B.A. and M.A. in American and British Literature at New York University, Mazzara worked at the NYU Medical Center as Logistics Manager for the Emergency Department, which oddly was the perfect training ground for a career in television production. He arrived in Hollywood fifteen years ago and landed his first writing job on CBS’s Emmy-nominated series Nash Bridges. Since then, his credits have also included TNT’s medical drama Hawthorne, STARZ first scripted drama Crash, and NBC’s Life. In 2010 Mazzara joined the writers room as a freelance writer onThe Walking Dead, the zombie drama based on the comic books of Robert Kirkman. That same year, Mazzara received a Writers Guild of America Award nomination for his work on the series. Upon series creator Frank Darabont’s departure, Mazzara was promoted to showrunner for season two. Under his leadership, The Walking Dead’s mid-season three premiere became the biggest basic cable telecast ever with more than 12.3 million viewers. To follow Glenn Mazzara on twitter – @glenmazzara
Also speaking at this year’s TSC is two-time Emmy Award nominee, Bob Kushell, who will lead a workshop on “Anatomy of the Pilot” based on the BBC Comedy show he created, Way to Go. He will discuss the development process of the show, character development and how it came to the BBC. Kushell’s executive producer credits include Anger Management, Suburgatory, Samantha Who?, The Tracy Morgan Show, and 3rd Rock from the Sun. To follow Bob Kushell on twitter @BobKushell
Vander Caballero, creator and designer of the critically-acclaimed fantasy adventure game Papo & Yo, currently on PlayStation Network, will lead a master class on writing for games. Praised as a masterpiece for changing video games today, Papo & Yo is autobiographically inspired and is based on Caballero’s relationship with his abusive father. To follow Vander Caballero on twitter @we_are_minority
HBO Creative Executive, Kathleen McCaffrey (Girls, Boardwalk Empire, True Blood, Entourage), and leading industry script consultant and best-selling author of “Inside Story: The Powers of the Transformational Arc” Dara Marks, have been added to the speakers list, along with previously announced screenwriter Aaron Korsh (Suits) and author Penny Penniston “Talk the Talk: A Dialogue Workshop for Scriptwriters.”