Mayans M.C. has been renewed for a third season of the Sons of Anarchy spinoff without co-creator Kurt Sutter.
“We’re happy to continue telling the story of Mayans M.C. with our partners at Fox 21 and excited that Elgin James has earned the opportunity to become the series’ showrunner,” Nick Grad, president original programming at FX, said Monday in a statement.
“Kurt Sutter identified and chose Elgin as his partner on the show from the outset, and Elgin has been instrumental to the success of the series, leveraging his experience and creative vision to make Mayans M.C. with this incredible cast, crew and creative team,” Grad said in the statement.
“Keeping this vibrant series strong is a huge priority to everyone at Fox 21 Television Studios, FX Productions and of course FX, which has been a spectacular home and platform for both Mayans M.C. and Sons before it,” Fox 21 Studios President Bert Salke said.
Sutter notified Mayans M.C. cast and crew of his firing via email.
“It’s been reported by writers, producers, cast and crew that my absence and subsequent behaviour when there, has only created confusion, chaos, hostility and is perceived as abandonment,” he wrote in an email.
“Or at least that’s how Disney has interpreted it. I’m sure it’s true.”
According to Sutter’s letter, FX CEO John Landgraf and Disney TV Studios and ABC Entertainment chairman Dana Walden fired him for “all the complaints levied against me.”
“Not the way I wanted to end my 18 year relationship with FX. At least being fired for being an abrasive dick is on brand,” Sutter added.
Sutter’s letter, addressed to Team Mayans, said: “Apparently, Disney HR and Business Affairs has conducted an investigation into the unacceptable conditions that have been created on the set of Mayans in season 2. As you know, I’ve removed myself quite a bit this season, allowing others to take a bigger role in producing the show. It appears that philosophy has backfired.”
“I deeply apologize if I’ve made people feel less than or unsupported,” Sutter wrote, adding that his intention “was literally the opposite.”
“My arrogance and chronic distraction has created wreckage. Just know, I adore this cast and crew.”
Sutter said that he was unsure about the fate of Mayans M.C. but assured the crew that if the FX series continues, it’s in good hands.
“As I said at the premier, Elgin is ready to take on the challenge of running the show. I’m sure FX will get him the support he needs to find and follow his vision,” the Sons of Anarchy actor wrote.
“For those of you who wanted me gone, you win!” Sutter said.
Sutter added that he doesn’t “need, nor want, replies or condolences.”
Mayans M.C. is set in the fictional border city of Santo Padre, Calif., and follows Ezekiel “EZ” Reyes, played by J.D. Pardo, a fresh-out-of-prison “prospect” for a chapter of the Mayans, a Mexican-American motorcycle club. (A prospect is a potential member who must prove himself to the others). Reyes is coming to terms with his former life as a one-time promising student at Stanford University who is now inside the world of crime and Mexican cartels.
The Mayans were the sometimes rivals, sometimes allies of the Sons of Anarchy in the original series.
Meanwhile, Ezekiel’s butcher father, played by Edward James Olmos, serves as his adviser and sometimes confidante as the young Reyes seeks just to survive. Together the pair leads a majority-Latino cast who navigate the dark world of motorcycle gangs and tensions from immigration, cartel violence and race.