When American Gods returns next year, it will be missing its key creative forces: executive producers Bryan Fuller and Michael Green.
Variety reports the pair are leaving the Starz program, based on the novel by Neil Gaiman, over a budget dispute and other creative differences. It is said the pair hoped to increase the per-episode costs past a reported $10 million dollars. Production company FremantleMedia declined the request.
Which seems to be par for the course with Fuller, a talented writer/producer whose shows always end up in a drama as fraught as anything he drafts for his shows. Pushing Daisies was a cult classic which was low-rated and ended on a cliffhanger. Hannibal was a beloved, but never in the metrics NBC desired. And just last year, Fuller left Star Trek: Discovery over scheduling and creative differences with CBS.
The first season of American Gods was richly textured and, at times, a difficult watch. It was also rewarding as the journey of Shadow Moon (Ricky Whittle) and Mr. Wednesday (Ian McShane) began in a wondrous, cinematic way. But creating such a show is not easy on television budgets and it seems Fuller’s aspirations have, once again, come into conflict with the realities of making television.
But I’m sure many are hoping this makes a revival of Hannibal that much easier to realize. Fuller is also involved in a new version of Amazing Stories.
American Gods is scheduled to return sometime next year.