Matthew Weiner and AMC Are Playing Hardball Over Mad Men

Today AMC announced that season five of its hit show Mad Men will start in 2012 even though the network still doesn't have a contract with the show's creator, Matt Weiner. So now AMC is taking negotiations to the gossip pages.

Apparently AMC wants Weiner to cut three minutes from each episode (to make more room for commercials), cut two characters from the show, and integrate products more directly into each episode. Weiner, naturally, doesn't want any of those things, and presumably wants to hold on to control of the show as well as the $30 million paycheck that AMC has offered him for two more years. The announcement today might have been a shot across the bow, letting Weiner know that season five is going to happen with our without him.

Someone—presumably from Team Weiner—talked to The Daily about the negotiations and chewed out AMC for holding the show hostage. "Weiner is being completely screwed by AMC," the source said. "Weiner just may walk away from the show."

No one wants that to happen, of course. What we'd like is for them to make up really quickly and start filming the next season already. But if you had to kick two characters off the show, who would it be? I cast my vote for Betty Draper and Pete Campbell.

Update:

AMC Sticks to Its Guns in Mad Men Dispute

[Image via Getty]