Glen Mazzara – Executive Producer / Writer
Glen Mazzara knew he wanted to be a writer when he was six years old, so he immersed himself in literature, television and film. The simple yet horrifying setting of The Exorcist, the grittiness of Hill Street Blues, the intensive character development, dark nature and surprise plot twists of Rod Serling’s The Twilight Zone and Frank Miller’s Daredevil, are all influences that can be seen in Mazzara’s body of work, which includes Golden Globe®-winning The Shield, FX's groundbreaking police drama; Crash, the first scripted drama on the pay-cable network STARZ; TNT’s medical drama Hawthorne; as well as NBC’s Life and CBS’ Nash Bridges.
While earning a B.A. and M.A. in American and British literature at New York University, Mazzara worked at NYU Medical Center as Logistics Manager for the Emergency Department, responsible for managing staff and juggling a $1 million renovation project that he completed for only $450,000. The job proved to be the perfect training ground for a career in television production.
While working at the hospital, Mazzara continued to write short stories and plays and taught himself how to write scripts. In 1998, Manager Ted Schachter encouraged Mazzara to move to Hollywood and helped him land his first writing job as a staff writer for the Emmy-nominated Nash Bridges in what became a breeding ground for hot writing talent alongside Shawn Ryan (The Shield), John Wirth (Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles), and Creator and Showrunner Carlton Cuse (Lost). After two years, Mazzara followed Shawn Ryan to join The Shield’s core writing staff and to become Ryan’s #2.
Mazzara left The Shield after five seasons to pursue his own project, the scripted drama Crash, on which he served as creator, executive producer and for the first time, showrunner. After one season, Mazzara made the move to TNT’s Hawthorne, where he once again took on the role of showrunner and executive producer, while fully leveraging his background in hospital administration.
In 2010, Mazzara was brought on as a freelance writer for AMC’s The Walking Dead, a zombie drama based on the comic books of Robert Kirkman. Series Creator Frank Darabont soon recognized his writing skills and ability to manage staff -- a rare combination of talents -- and brought Mazzara on-board as his #2. He was nominated for a Writer’s Guild of America (WGA) Award for his work on Season 1.
Upon Darabont’s departure, Mazzara was elevated to showrunner for Season 2. Under Mazzara’s direction, and alongside an amazing cast and crew including Executive Producer Gale Anne Hurd (Terminator), the series drew critical and popular acclaim, with The Walking Dead’s Season 2 Finale attracting more than 9 million viewers to become the highest-rated drama finale in basic cable history.
Passionate about both writing and mentoring, Mazzara works with CBS’s Writers Mentoring Program, the Writer’s Guild Showrunner Training Program and Writers on the Verge and teaches classes and seminars at colleges across the country, including UCLA, USC, Emerson College and Loyola Marymount University.
Born in Queens, New York, Mazzara currently resides in Los Angeles with his wife and three sons.