Nearly one decade ago, Robert Kirkman's world of "The Walking Dead" exploded onto AMC and changed the face of television forever, but all things, even the undead, must come to an end.
Through a press release sent out earlier today, AMC announced that its long-running zombie series "The Walking Dead" will end with an expanded two-year eleventh season that will span 24 episodes. With the previously announced six extra season 10 episodes scheduled for early next year, there are 30 remaining episodes of the flagship series that will run through late 2022.
As "The Walking Dead" universe continues to expand, the original series will be followed by a greenlit spin-off focused on the popular Daryl Dixon (Norman Reedus) and Carol Peletier (Melissa McBride) characters, which will premiere in 2023 and be run by current "The Walking Dead" showrunner Angela Kang, who co-created the series with Scott M. Gimple, chief content officer of "The Walking Dead" Universe. AMC is also working with Gimple to develop a new "Tales of the Walking Dead" series, an episodic anthology with individual episodes or arcs of episodes focused on new or existing characters, backstories or other stand-alone experiences. The company, working closely with Gimple, is also developing a number of other new and innovative projects grounded in "The Walking Dead" universe.
"It's been ten years ‘gone bye;’ what lies ahead are two more to come and stories and stories to tell beyond that," said Gimple. "What’s clear is that this show has been about the living, made by a passionate cast, team of writer/producers, producers, and crew, bringing to life the vision put forth by Robert Kirkman in his brilliant comic — and supported by the best fans in the world. We have a lot of thrilling story left to tell on TWD, and then, this end will be a beginning of more Walking Dead -- brand new stories and characters, familiar faces and places, new voices, and new mythologies. This will be a grand finale that will lead to new premieres. Evolution is upon us. ‘The Walking Dead’ lives."
"I look forward to digging in with our brilliant writers, producers, directors, cast and crew to bring this epic final chapter of Robert Kirkman’s story to life for our fans over the next two years," said Kang. "‘The Walking Dead’ flagship series has been my creative home for a decade and so it’s bittersweet to bring it to an end, but I could not be more excited to be working with Scott Gimple and AMC to develop a new series for Daryl and Carol. Working with Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride has been a highlight of my career and I’m thrilled that we get to keep telling stories together."
"‘The Walking Dead’ made television history, and is one of those rare creative works that has given life to an entire content universe that is still in the early stages of growing and entertaining both new and established fans," said Ed Carroll, chief operating officer of AMC Networks. "We can’t wait to bring viewers this expanded final season of ‘The Walking Dead’ over the next two years, and launch the fourth series in the history of the franchise, focused on the beloved Daryl and Carol characters, with the incredibly talented Norman Reedus, Melissa McBride, Angela Kang and Scott M. Gimple. There really is so much ‘walking’ ahead, in a number of very exciting directions, for this extraordinary creative universe we call ‘The Walking Dead.’"
"I feel incredibly honored to be a part of ‘The Walking Dead.’ This show changed my life and career and everyone involved has truly been a family for me over the last decade. I’m thankful for AMC’s love and support and know there’s so much more story to tell and so much more to bring the best fans in the world. Daryl’s relationship with Carol has always been my favorite relationship on the show (sorry Rick)," Reedus said. "I love the way these characters interact and relate to each other on so many levels and can’t wait to see where their ride goes from here."
In other "Walking Dead" news, the all-new series "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" will premiere following the main series' Season 10 finale on October 4th, while "Fear The Walking Dead" will debut its sixth season on October 11th. A feature film that focuses on Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) is also in the works.