This year’s San Diego Comic-Con was quite an emotional event for fans of The Walking Dead. Two months prior to the event, news broke that fans of the series had hoped to never hear – Rick Grimes himself, Andrew Lincoln, was leaving the series.
During The Walking Dead’s Hall H panel presentation on Friday, Lincoln finally address the news directly to his fans. He addressed the crowd by saying, “This will be my last season playing the part of Rick Grimes. I love this show. It means everything to me. I love the people who make this show. I’m particularly fond of the people who watch this show,” before adding, “My relationship with Rick Grimes is far from over.”
On Saturday, Lincoln and the cast in attendance including Lauren Cohan, Danai Gurira, Norman Reedus and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, as well as executive producer Gale Anne Hurd, sat down with Entertainment Weekly for an interview. In the interview, EW asked if Lincoln now felt a sense of relief that the news was finally out in the open and that he had the opportunity to directly speak to the fans on the matter. While Lincoln did say he was a bit relieved, he also commented that he felt regret. Lincoln responded by saying:
Lincoln then joked that the best way to avoid spoilers was not to tell Robert Kirkman about anything. Kirkman had confirmed Lincoln’s exit from the series just a day prior to The Walking Dead panel.
Lincoln won’t be the only lead actor set to leave the series this season. It has also been reported that Lauren Cohan (who plays Maggie Greene (Rhee)) will be leaving the series before the season’s end. Cohan was recently cast in ABC’s Whiskey Cavalier which has been picked up to series during the 2018 television upfronts. Both Cohan and Lincoln are said to appear in just six episodes in the upcoming season.
The Walking Dead will return to AMC with new episodes starting on October 7th.
What do you think about Andrew Lincoln’s exit? Are you pumped for The Walking Dead‘s ninth season? What do you hope to see in the upcoming season? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below and also check out the explosive, new season 9 trailer HERE.