© itshazza

They’re baaack. 
The best show on television finally returns tonight at 9 on AMC with a two hour premiere. Don’t miss it!

They’re baaack.

The best show on television finally returns tonight at 9 on AMC with a two hour premiere. Don’t miss it!

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         x mad men       x jon hamm       x january jones       x christina hendricks       x talia balsam       x elisabeth moss       x vincent kartheiser       x john slattery       x bryan batt       x season 6       x amc       


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         x MAD MEN       x SEASON 6       x AMC       

Check it out! I’m currently watching Lie To Me on Netflix (which by the way is a great show, I’m bummed they cancelled it) and quite a few familiar AMC faces have popped up.

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         x Patrick Fischler       x amc       x christopher stanley       x dean norris       x lie to me       x mireille enos       

Another season of Mad Men has come to its end and nothing matters anymore.

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         x mad men       x amc       x jon hamm       x don draper       x john slattery       x roger sterling       x elisabeth moss       x peggy olson       x january jones       x betty draper       x christina hendricks       x joan holloway       x jessica pare       x matthew weiner       x alexis bledel       x gif       x gifs       x kristen wiig       x vincent kartheiser       x pete campbell       

We only have a couple of episodes left (eep!) of the season so let’s discuss. Tell us your predictions: What will happen?

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         x mad men       x predictions       x season 5       x amc       x jon hamm       x don draper       x sally draper       x kiernan shipka       x january jones       x betty draper       x henry francis       x christopher stanley       x alison brie       x trudy campbell       x alexis bledel       x vincent kartheiser       x pete campbell       x christina hendricks       x joan holloway       x john slattery       x roger sterling       x aaron staton       x ken cosgrove       x harry crane       x rich sommer       x jessica pare       x megan       

Matthew Weiner talks Mad Men 

Have you been feeling the absence of “Mad Men” in the same way as the audience? Was there a period of readjustment you had to go through when you went back to work?


I like to think the way the audience does, and it’s a been a long time and I’m bummed about that. But I also feel like I miss my people. I know how I felt when I got to back to work, and got to start working on the stories and see people showing up in makeup and hair and dusting off the sets. Whatever events that were out of my control – the ones that were in my control have conspired so that people, by the time [the premiere] gets here, might have forgiven us. That’s why I have a two-hour premiere. I did not want to be gone. Here is a double helping. Stuff yourself. Don’t be like that snake that Don talked about and choke on it.

Did you feel you had to do anything to reset the stage for viewers, to remind them who these characters are?


I will never do that. I love that feeling I used to get with “The Sopranos,” where I would see a character and say, “When did that happen? Did I miss an episode?” And what you realize is, those people are going on with their life. This is a separate season. They’re all the same people. Those things really happened to them. I’m not telling the story of Don being divorced and punishing himself and sinking into liquor and losing Anna and becoming close with Peggy and almost losing the business. That was the story of Season 4.  And honestly, it’s a TV show. No matter what happens, you’ll be able to understand it. It’s not “Finnegans Wake.” There’s people, they’re in costumes, they’re kissing, they’re arguing.


The fourth season ended with Don’s surprising decision to propose to his secretary, Megan. What did that story line mean to you? Was it meant to show Don’s impulsiveness, that he would chose her over Dr. Faye, who seemed a better match for him?

I think it was very abrupt for people that he suddenly did this. It seemed very impulsive. But a man of that age and era will not stay on their own. And in the end, the choice was a youth versus age thing. It’s not about the substance of the people. Faye is substantive; we don’t know anything about Megan, if she’s not substantive. Faye is saying, “Grow up, get a lawyer, become the man that you are.” Megan is saying: “I don’t care who you are. You can make yourself who you want to be.” And I think that we were faithful to that choice, that Don wanted to be in that lavender haze, as we described it, of having someone look at him who doesn’t know him, who admires him, who represents what youth brings to every society, which is hope. As opposed to, “My feet hurt.” That mind-set versus, “You know what? Let’s get roller skates.”


There was also a scene, in the Season 4 finale, in which it looked like Betty was open to the possibility of patching things up with Don.


She is there to reconcile with him in some way. We see her before Don comes in, primping, and we know how she feels. And we saw her fight with Henry and Don didn’t. But I think that she offers herself to him. Don on some level enjoys saying to her that it’s too late. I always quote Lisa Albert, one of my writers. After Betty ran off with Henry, before we even did Season 4, she said, “My feeling is, this character of Betty Draper will learn as little as possible.” And I think that’s really what it is. And her running back to Don, let’s face it – that was a bad marriage. He’s a terrible husband. But what about the compromise of life?


Does it ever feel to you like Betty has to bear more of the audience’s resentment than other characters? She also had that devastating scene in the finale where she suddenly fired the family maid, Carla.

I think the audience does not like looking in the mirror and seeing a wart. We see a lot of her private behavior and her private behavior is no worse than anybody else’s. They want her to be better and I think that her beauty works against it all. They think, “You’re so beautiful and you have everything – you should put up with more.” But Betty is not a racist. I think Betty thinks everyone in the world works for her. I really do. I think she’s constantly disappointed that she can’t get good help.


Since we’re obviously not going to get into plot specifics, can you talk in general terms about how you prepare for writing a new season?


What really happens is there’s about a three-week rumination period, which involves a lot of napping, a lot of holding books. Whether I’m reading them or not, I cannot say. A lot of conversation, unrelated to the show, where I think about my own life. I get a sense of where I’m going and what I think is the next part of these people’s lives. Before the premiere of Season 4, I didn’t tell anybody whether or not they had a new agency, or whether or not they’d failed. We could have come back and they could have been back at Sterling Cooper in those offices. Just taking [Don’s] engagement: so is that going to go through or not? What is the next stage in this person’s life? What is the story I want to tell about that?


Are you taking input from your writers at this stage?


No. The writers aren’t working yet, but I try things out on people. There are people like Bob Levinson, who is on my staff as a consultant. In 1960 he was on the Lucky Strike account at BBDO, and then he became a television agent. Before Season 4, I said: “All this stuff is starting to happen. ’64, ’65, the Watts riots, there was so much stuff going on that summer. What was the feeling?” And he goes, “Oh, you know, I had just gotten my first big raise and we were looking for a house.” And that’s the thing I always have to remember, is don’t assume that because you’re living in tumultuous times that people are not living their lives. I’ve committed to how old Don is, I’ve committed to how old Peggy is. And then Pete, Joan. And then it’s just a matter of remembering what the consequences are and trying not to repeat what I’ve done. Don’s going to start here and end here. Peggy’s going to start here and end here. It’s always about change, I’m starting to realize that that’s all that I’m writing about. And I think it’s because we are living in a time of tremendous change and you can’t pretend anymore.


So that will be a theme of the new season?

There’s a line in Episode 3, which is Week 2, where somebody says: “When is everything going to get back to normal?” Who hasn’t felt that right this minute? And that is a lot of what the season is about. That sensation that, well, this is normal. I don’t think that’s my age or anything. I think that’s the state of the United States. And it’s not because we were riding so high and all of a sudden we got knocked down. It’s been a fairly steady stream of [awfulness]. [laughs] Maybe this is part of being an adult,  living in a state of “this may not last forever.” Maybe I’m too much like Don and I only like the beginnings of things, I don’t know. And there’s a lot this season about every man for himself, about looking out for yourself. We know the people that need to learn that lesson but it’s really an unpleasant thing. I guess because I’m a liberal I think it’s not people’s natural instinct to be completely self-interested. It’s an ugly thing to see ambition and to see people satisfying themselves. But that’s what the story is. [pause] Does that sound juicy?


There’s a traditional model of television writing, where stories are pitched in the writers’ room, assigned to individual writers and then the scripts that come back get rewritten in the room. Is that how “Mad Men” operates?


No, no, it’s not like that at all. The outline comes out of the room. Maria and André  [Jacquemetton] drive the train on that. I have story ideas, people have story ideas, we break the A, B and C stories. This is all the way “The Sopranos” did it. That’s the only way I knew to do it and we have our own version of it. We cut them into strips and we tape them into an outline of like 45 beats. Some of them we assign to a writer and they go off and write a draft. I see that draft, and if I have time, I give notes. Sometimes it’s like an audition. There are people who write a draft and it’s the end of it. You say, “I don’t think this is going to work out.” But whatever happens, eventually the script comes to me and I start fresh to some degree. And then I do a draft and that goes to the room. They give me their notes, I do another draft, I do another draft, I just keep doing. If I change less than 80 percent of it, I will leave their name on it, by themselves. Now, it’s unfair on some level, because I’m deciding what I change.


Do you think that’s commonplace at other shows?


Everyone who has my job does this. They don’t usually put their names on it. It was important for my mental health, to see my name on there for work that I had done almost all of, in some cases. And I never understood it, why a person would want their name on a script if they didn’t write all of it. I would never want my name on something that I did not write most of. Part of television is you get rewritten. When I wrote for David Chase, I kept saying, “I’m going to write a script he can’t rewrite.” That was my mode. Not, “You’re just going to change it anyway.” So that’s the way it works here and I’m very open about it also, and not everybody is.


Were you ever concerned, during the negotiation process, that maybe there wouldn’t be a Season 5?


I quit. I had come to terms with the fact that it was over. And I always end every season like it’s the end of the show. So, yeah. There was a terror in me that someone else would come in and do it. And I don’t know how they would do it, but I would have to live with that. In the most protective and demanding way, I did not feel that it was worth going back to work to make a show that was not the show I’d been making. I had this argument with my wife, where I said: “You don’t understand – it’s not just a matter of changing the show. I don’t want to go to work and do it different. I just figured out how it works.” This is what the audience likes, these are the characters the audience likes, and this is the length of the show. And I definitely feel that the longer part of the show is part of its commercial uniqueness. And it’s a scarce product to begin with. There’s 13 a year. So you have to give them that in the form it is. It’s like changing a novel into a short story, to me.


So, just to be clear –


Yes, I quit, at the negotiation. During the negotiation. And in the end, everything worked out.

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         x mad men       x season 5       x matthew weiner       x march 25       x jon hamm       x january jones       x amc       

Mark your calendars, ad (wo)men. 

March 25th

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Entertainment Weekly

Entertainment Weekly

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January’s awesome. She’s so opposite of her character. She’s so sweet and funny; I love working with her. Last season, we had some great stuff to do together. She did all the yelling at me, she slapped me around a bit, she terrorized me a ton. Kind of in a ‘Mommy Dearest’ sort of fashion. It was really fun. It was a lot of drama. I’m super excited [for her baby]! Hopefully I’ll get to babysit! That would be really fun.

Kiernan Shipka (Mad Men’s Sally Draper) on January Jones

If people are willing to take what the other Draper child said to heart (read here), then you should probably give this just as much credence.

(via ivelostmyalias)

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         x January Jones       x kiernan shipka       x Mad Men       x haters to the left       x television       x AMC       

No need to fret just yet! 

An insider says, “The cast is returning.” If anything were to happen in that arena, it would affect minor characters on the show. 

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AMC Officially Greenlights Season 5 Of ‘Mad Men’ For Early 2012 Premiere  

Despite not having a deal with Mad Men creator-executive producer Matt Weiner yet, AMC is officially moving ahead with a fifth season of the Emmy-winning period drama, exercising its option with the series’ producer Lionsgate TV. (The cable network made a similar move two years ago when, along with Lionsgate, it was again embroiled in difficult renegotiations with Weiner.) Because of the protracted talks with Weiner, referred to in a statement by AMC as “key non-cast negotiations,” the premiere of Season 5 is being pushed from the summer to early next year. Here is the full statement: "AMC has officially authorized production of season 5 of Mad Men, triggering our option with Lionsgate. While we are getting a later start than in years past due to ongoing, key non-cast negotiations, Mad Men will be back for a fifth season in early 2012.”

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