‘Blue Bloods’ Creators Were Once Fired from Another Hit TV Show

by Samantha Whidden

Here’s some interesting trivia, prior to creating and producing their hit police procedural drama TV series Blue Bloods, husband-wife writing team Mitchell Burgess and Robin Green actually took jobs for HBO’s crime drama The Sopranos.  

According to Looper, the Blue Bloods creators wrote some episodes for Northern Exposure and Party of Five. They then reconnected with Almost Grown’s David Chase to write his mob drama. Unfortunately, Burgess and Green had a fallout with Chase and left the series in 2006. Burgess was also nominated for 11 Emmy Awards and won 3 for his work on The Sopranos. Green was awarded the 2001 and 2003 Emmy for Best Writing of a Drama Series for episodes of the HBO show. 

What May Have Happened on the Soprano’s Set?

So, what was the issue? Blue Bloods fans speculated in a Subreddit post found an except from Brett Martin’s book Difficult Men: Behind the Scenes of a Creative Revolution: From The Sopranos and The Wire to Mad Men and Breaking Bad that the relationship with Chase and Green grew sour, with Green explaining, “I wanted out. But I would never have said that. He wanted us to say yes.”

Chase also says, “From the beginning, there was something about The Sopranos they didn’t get. [Blue Blood’s Green and Burgess] either could not, or didn’t want to, understand the through-the-looking-glass quality of the wiseguy mentality. I sat there in a room while Robin argued with Terry [Winter] all afternoon about whether Tony [Soprano] would have to kill Tony Blundetto.” 

Green also implies some pettiness sparked between the three writers. “[Chase] had a list of infractions, some of them going back twenty years,” Green recalls. “He could cite the time when I drank too much at a party and interrupted a conversation he was having.”

Burgess and Green Move On to Create Blue Bloods

Since leaving The Sopranos, the couple went on to write for Southland before creating the CBS series Blue Bloods. The duo has created a total of 223 episodes of the show, which premieres in 2010.  The show is recently premiered its eleventh season finale in May 2021. In April 2021, CBS renewed the series for a twelfth season.

According to its IMDb, Blue Bloods follows the lives of the NYPD’s “First Family of Law Enforcement,” which are the Reagans. Its synopsis reads, “The story of a classic Irish Catholic New York family with family throughout the justice system of New York. The father is the Police Commissioner, the sons are both cops, and while the daughter is a DA.” The show films in NYC and references to nearby suburbs

Those starring in the series include Donnie Wahlberg, Bridget Moynahan, Will Estes, Len Cariou, Tom Selleck, and Amy Carlson. The next season will premiere in Fall 2021.