Mad Men Writer, Executive Producer Semi Chellas Shares Show’s Secrets

Clarification appended 
Semi Chellas — writer and executive producer of the television series Mad Men — spoke about her experiences behind the scenes of the Emmy-award winning show Thursday in Klarman Hall. Chellas called her relationship with the show’s creator, Matthew Weiner a “complicated dynamic.” She also described his definition of a successful pitch. “He told me once, if you pitch me something and I say no, then I come back a little later and I pitch it to you saying ‘I just thought of that,’ then you [have] succeeded,” Chellas said. “You have to internalize the stories, and kind of live with them and have them come forth within you.”
Although Weiner gave Mad Men its direction, the end product was ultimately the collective effort of the writers that developed the story, according to Chellas. “It was his story, but not necessarily his stories,” she said.