Fans of Sons of Anarchy and Mayans M.C. when show runner Kurt Sutter was fired from the second season of Mayans, allegedly due to complaints from crew to HR. While he had previously stated that he would be stepping away if the series got a third season, FX decided to remove him before that time.
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However, Sutter explained after the debacle that there was a different reason for his firing. He explained in an interview with Deadline that he was hesitant to return for Mayans.
“I did not want to come back and do another MC show. Besides seeming like an admission of only possessing a single creative skill set, I felt like I’d told all the stories I had in that world.
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But FX was eager to capitalize on the IP and I had an interesting way into the world, so before I knew it, we were moving forward. I knew that a white guy shouldn’t be the voice of a Latin culture drama. So I brought on Elgin [James] and saw my primary creative responsibility as handling the transition from the SOA mythology to the Mayans mythology.”
While the first season of Mayans went rather well, Sutter explained that things began to come apart at the seams while making season two.
“Here’s what I did wrong on the production end in Season 2, the first season under the Disney regime. My plan was to hand off the day-to-day to Elgin by Season 3, and drop back into a hands-off producerial role. It was becoming more and more difficult for me to run this show. I was burned out, uninspired, I feared every idea was derivative. I was spending way too much time second-guessing story and reworking scripts. In the process, I put a greater burden on Elgin and my line producer, Jon Pare. Consciously or unconsciously, it allowed me to stick my head in the sand.”
Sutter continued, saying that his inability to adjust to the new Disney era started to cause problems on set.
“I had no idea how badly the family bond we created in Season 1 was coming apart. That is a rookie mistake. And so, my bad. The other blowback it caused was with the cast. I’ve never been a showrunner who spends a lot of time on set. I’ve learned when I’m around, shit just slows down. My presence was so greatly reduced, that some of my cast really felt my absence and understandably interpreted it as abandonment.”
However, Sutter clarifies that there were no complaints to HR over his behavior and that that was not why he was dismissed.
“As misguided as those decisions were, none of those mistakes are that unusual and certainly not grounds for dismissal. I just want to be clear, I’ve learned that there were no HR claims regarding bad behavior of any kind.”