Matt Weiner is on a short vacation with his family, but wanted to make sure to get a statement out through Basket of Kisses. Here’s what he said.
“There’s been a lot of speculation and misinformation in the press about what is going on. I want the fans to know directly from me that I had nothing to do with this delay and it is not about money. I am fighting for the cast and for the show. And I appreciate the kindness and concern of the fans.”
Matt then assured us that no matter what happens next, Basket of Kisses will hear it first (so watch this space).
Although time was short, we had a couple of follow-up questions. We asked about negotiations with AMC; how long had they been going on?
Matt: “We didn’t have an actual conversation until three weeks ago.”
Then we asked about the thing about cutting two cast members. Matt confirmed (as reported by The Wrap) that the actual request was to cut two cast members per season, so it would have been at least six people. (Roberta and I then started joking it would be the “Don and Sally Show.” Oy vey!)
Matt: “Even though people have left the show, none of that has ever been about money…I’ve brought the show in on budget. I’ve been a good producer.” We had a little chat, at that point, about the ways in which a producer trims the budget, with some interesting examples which we won’t get into now.
I asked Matt about the $30 million dollar number that’s been floating around, and generating gossip. Which is more important, I asked, the number or the cast?
Matt: “First of all, the number that’s been published is not true. Second of all, I offered to have less money, to save the cast, and to leave the show in the running time that it’s supposed to be. The harder that I’ve fought for the show, the more money that they’ve offered me.”
We asked, if there’s anything the fans could do, what could it be?
Matt: “Everyone can hold on, and we’ll see if it’s necessary, but of course I would want them to express their feelings. I can’t even tell you what it’s meant to me to have intelligent people who care about the show, who reflect about it, who obsess about it, it’s been a total surprise to me. It’s surpassed everything I would ever have expected.”
So, again, whatever happens next, you’ll hear about it first here, at Basket of Kisses, and Matt wants you all to know that you have made this creative endeavor a true joy, one he really, really hopes will continue.