Steven S. DeKnight
"Spartacus: Blood and Sand" (Starz)
In his next life, DeKnight wouldn't mind running a show that takes place in the real world. "You know, a nice quiet family drama where people sit around and talk about their feelings -- that'd be great," he says. The "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Angel" and "Smallville" alum scored this year with Starz's gladiator action series, which premiered to record-setting viewership in January. He's currently in Vancouver filming a six-episode prequel. Favorite TV Moment: "I've been rewatching old TV movies that scared the crap out of me as a kid, like 'Don't Be Afraid of the Dark.' I remember being really young, in the '70s, and sleeping with the lights on for two years after that."
Big Break: "Joss Whedon plucked me from obscurity to write for 'Buffy' and taught me everything I know, especially about running and producing a show. But technically, my first paying TV job was on MTV's primetime soap, 'Undressed.' And I share that honor with Damon Lindelof."