10 Power Showrunners: A Day in the Life, From Carlton Cuse to Jenji Kohan

Ann Biderman
Ann Biderman
 Jessica Chou

A voyeur's look through the bleary eyes of TV's busiest movers and shakers -- Ann Biderman, Jason Katims, Hart Hanson and Stephen Nathan, Scott M. Gimple, Armando Iannucci, Greg Berlanti, Kerry Ehrin, Jeff and Jackie Schaffer and Terence Winter.


Arrow (The CW)

It's Tuesday at the Warner Bros. headquarters of Berlanti Productions, a homey and spacious bungalow in the shadow of the studio's famous water tower. Today, its principal finds himself on the verge of being double booked. Meetings with the showrunners on Berlanti's CW series Arrow and The Tomorrow People are running back-to-back, just as the shows do on the air. One of them was supposed to take place at the writers offices, but a fire drill has sent much of his growing operation to his own office.

Here, Arrow showrunner Andrew Kreisberg outlines season-two episodes 12 though 17, writing on a dry-erase board in rapid succession as Berlanti chimes in while simultaneously petting the doxiepoo -- a dachshund/poodle mix -- he has smuggled in for the day. ("I've never brought a dog in here before," he says. "I'm dogsitting!") Less than a half-hour later, Tomorrow People's showrunner Phil Klemmer arrives. Berlanti wipes the Arrow board clean (as if to erase signs of show infidelity), and the next rundown begins in the neighboring room.

It's a den of sorts, where plush couches are covered with pillows embroidered with the titles of Berlanti's impressive TV credits: Political Animals, Brothers & Sisters, Everwood, Jack & Bobby, Dirty Sexy Money and Eli Stone, among others. "My mom makes them," he says proudly before correcting himself to hint he might have inherited a specific strain of her genetic material: "She really has someone else make them, so technically she produces them." -- M.O.

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