All good things come to an end and this week The Walking Dead announced it will end after its eleventh season. It’s been a crazy week and there have been a lot of clues to the return of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). AMC also announced that there will be two spinoff shows, one that will feature Daryl (Norman Reedus) and Carol (Melissa McBride) and an anthology series that will follow various series. Let’s recap what we know.
Before we jump into what we know, let’s start with how the cast and crew of The Walking Dead first found out about the end of the show.
Letter to Cast and Crew Informing Them of the End of The Walking Dead
As you may have seen in the press, we’ve come to a very big moment.
After our next, supersized season that will span a couple years, The Walking Dead will be coming to an end.
For all of us — especially those who have been a part of this show for the better part of a decade — this is a seismic announcement. Just to break it down:
- Season 11 will be the final, extended season of The Walking Dead, running 24 episodes, probably shooting until early 2022. (We say “probably,” being optimistic but recognizing current production-pandemic uncertainties that affect the schedule.)
- A Carol & Daryl spinoff has been greenlit by AMC for 2023.
- Tales of The Walking Dead, an anthology series, is in development, as well as other possible TWD series/expressions.
We can’t believe the end is upon us, however far away it is. This crew, this cast, these writer/producers and producers are the show. You are this show’s immediate future of 30 astounding episodes to fulfill our epic story and you will be among those who seal its legacy in entertainment history.
We have reached millions around the world, and we will continue to reach millions more. There’s a lot of work ahead of us, a lot of opportunities to be there for each other, to bring out each other’s best, to bring our show to new heights of excellence.
We’re lucky to have an audience that has stuck by us over ten years of massive change in the world. We hope to have been a point of stability in people’s lives — something they could count on every week (or as part of a late summer binge) to make them feel — happy, heartbroken, intrigued, scared, excited, inspired. Maybe a little grossed out. Maybe considering things about their own life. Maybe considering who they are. People will need those feelings again. And that stability again. And we can give that to them with this epic final season, the last chapter of a multi-year saga of people figuring out how to live in a broken world.
There is hard work, good times, and amazing moments ahead. The only way we can climb this mountain of episodes is how we’ve always done it: together. Let’s begin the long road to the end, standing side by side, in solidarity to do some awesome stuff with all the people who got us here, for all the people who got us here.
As ever, we are The Walking Dead.
– Scott M. Gimple & Angela Kang
The Walking Dead Ends with Season 11
AMC confirmed what had been rumored for sometime: The Walking Dead will end with Season 11. It was originally believed that Season 12 would be its last. However, with the delay of the Season 10 Finale, coupled with the addition of 6 episodes in early 2021, meant that a supersized Season 11 would, instead, be the end of the show.
“It’s been 10 years ‘gone bye;’ what lies ahead are two more to come and stories and stories to tell beyond that,” said franchise overlord Scott Gimple in a statement. “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”
Added showrunner Angela Kang, “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. 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 Two New Spinoffs for The Walking Dead
The first spinoff will focus on Daryl Dixon and Carol Peletier and will arrive in 2023. Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride will return to their starring roles, as the two final remaining characters from the show’s first season. The show is co-created by Dead-verse chief content officer Scott M. Gimple and Walking Dead showrunner Angela Kang, who’ll fill that same role on the new show.
“It’s bittersweet to bring [the flagship series] to an end,” Kang said in a statement, “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 second new Walking Dead show will be called, Tales of the Walking Dead. The show will be an anthology series that will consist of standalone episodes or arcs, may revolve around previously-introduced characters or new ones, and may or may not shed new light on the backstories of familiar characters.
Cracked AMC COO Ed Carroll, “There really is so much ‘walking’ ahead, in a number of very exciting directions, for this extraordinary creative universe.”
This show sounds exciting! And, it supports a lot of the rumors of individual characters, such as Abraham and The Governor, getting stand-alone movies or short series runs!
The Return of Rick Grimes
There has been a lot of speculation as to whether Andrew Lincoln would return to the show to finish out the role and story of Rick Grimes. Leave it to none other than Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl, to continue to fan the flames of speculation that Rick is returning.
Reedus didn’t post any comment to his socials, following the announcement. Instead, Reedus took to Instagram to post an image of himself, along with Melissa McBride, and… yep, you guessed it… Andrew Lincoln! The image is a callback from the famous EW shoot that the trio partook in. However, what is important is that it focuses on Rick and Daryl holding hands. Is this a hint at the pair reuniting?
Take a look and then listen to what else we know!
Earlier in the week, there was a lot of speculation and rumor that Andrew Lincoln would be returning to the role of Rick Grimes very soon. What we didn’t know, when all of these clues started to fall into place, was that AMC was about to announce the end of The Walking Dead.
Angel Theory, who plays Kelly on The Walking Dead, posted an image of herself, Cassady McClincy, and Andrew Lincoln on her Twitter account (See the image below). The tweet said: “REALLY wishing we could have gotten scenes with Lydia, Kelly and Rick. Maybe someday.” Since the post, Theory’s account has now gone into private mode.
UPDATE: Theory has since restored her Twitter account but has deleted the tweet.
In order to properly end The Walking Dead, the show has to end with Rick Grimes, with whom the show started. The Walking Dead is Rick Grimes’ story. It’s only proper to end it with Rick, since Carl (Chandler Riggs) is no longer alive on the show.
What we do know is that Lincoln has been involved still with the show. According to Scott Gimple, who is in charge of The Walking Dead Universe for AMC, Gimple said had during San Diego Comic-Con at Home that Lincoln still has a huge say in what happens in the series. “He throws around the football with the rest of us. He’s very, very interested in this thing,” said Gimple. “And I got to tell you, he’s itching to get back, too. We all are,” he continued.
Second, as the pandemic is slowing and production begins to start on several fronts, the long-awaited Rick Grimes movie may be soon to be underway. As well, fans have started to argue whether or not it is Rick that is under the Masked Stranger’s mask that is seen in the Season 10 Finale trailer for The Walking Dead.
AMC has also posted notice with Georgia’s film department that the show is now back in pre-production and headed towards full-blown filming.
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Lincoln has previously stated that he may have left the show too soon, as the writing for the show has been strong the past two seasons. There wouldn’t be a more exciting moment on the show than to have Rick Grimes make a comeback in the Season 10 finale of the show of which the episode is titled, “A Certain Doom.” An appearance in the final episode, albeit brief, would excite past and present viewers of the show to make sure that Season 11 would be appointment television again.
When you take all of these small clues into consideration, the circumstantial evidence points to the return of Rick Grimes for Season 11. Obviously, this doesn’t mean that Rick has to partake in all 24 episodes that the mega-season will give viewers. However, bringing Rick back to put a bow on one of the greatest shows ever is only appropriate. Plus, it would launch The Walking Dead films, making them more likely to be successful since the pandemic had slowed production.
The Walking Dead Season 10 Finale will air on Octrober 4 at 8 p.m., then return in early 2021 with six additional episodes for an add-on of Season 10. Then, the show will air in the fall of 2021 for 24 episodes (normally a season is 16) and run into 2022, ending the flagship show of The Walking Dead Universe.
There’s still 31 episodes of The Walking Dead for fans! We’ve got a lot to cover! Come back, as we cover more The Walking Dead than any other news site on the internet!
Before you go, check out the reaction of the cast and crew on all of the news!
truly the end of a legendary era in television. i was the biggest fan of the show while i was on it, and will continue to watch until the very end & am so excited to see how it closes. https://t.co/ojO0isHLWZ
— chandler riggs (@chandlerriggs) September 10, 2020
The next adventure begins ……. y’all stay safe !! 👊😷👊
— Michael Cudlitz (@Cudlitz) September 10, 2020
BREAKING: #TheWalkingDead will conclude in 2022 with an extended 24-episode 11th and final season. In 2023, Angela Kang will return to helm a fourth #TWD series starring Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride. Details: https://t.co/256kz1pAzn pic.twitter.com/GLbd3zG6UF
— The Walking Dead (@TheWalkingDead) September 9, 2020
Im sad to hear about the walking dead ending but im honored to have been been part of such an iconic series and I’m looking forward to the spin offs! #thewalkingdeadamc #michonnespets #michonne #mosesmoseley #theshaywest pic.twitter.com/wYEhka7rIk
— Moses Moseley (@MosesMoseley) September 9, 2020
WOW! I’m speechless. Say it isn’t so. Congratulations to anyone that ever had the chance to get on the #twd train and become apart of the #twdfamily. Thank you for the memories. What a ride. What a mothaFREAKIN’ RIDE!! #twdfans #thewalkingdead #farewellhttps://t.co/BlwNMlZB8F
— IronE Singleton (@ironesingleton) September 9, 2020
i’m not crying, u are https://t.co/XqRS4rDSuE
— addy miller (@TheAddyMiller) September 9, 2020
Loved S1, got lucky enough to become a part of it. Best group of collaborators, best fans, best experiences making tv. More 2 come. Thinking of my comrades today, of the support along the way, I couldn’t be prouder to say, “this is not real blood, I work for the Walking Dead.” pic.twitter.com/3SNAttaG8g
— Scott M. Gimple (@ScottMGimple) September 9, 2020
The news today is a little bitter sweet because I’m always going to be so grateful that I fell in love with #TheWalkingDead, it brought me so much joy, and gave me so many amazing experiences and characters that I fell in love with and will always love. I will always cherish- pic.twitter.com/q5KzueVcNK
— (@writtenbysara) September 9, 2020
I gotta say, I’m not sad. #TWD has given me so many opportunities & the chance to meet so many friends, I’ll always be thankful. It’s been a huge part of my life & still will be. What a long, strange, EPIC trip It’s been. #TheWalkingDead #TWD #TWDFamilyhttps://t.co/u6jOGWljtf pic.twitter.com/uCdqi3EpEb
— Stephen Sweet (@sweetstephen55) September 9, 2020
It is so bittersweet that @TheWalkingDead is ending. This show has been such a massive part of my life for the past 8 years. It has given me so many insanely awesome opportunities and has introduced me to so many wonderful people that have become friends.#TheWalkingDead pic.twitter.com/RZVxxEJHdR
— Jeffrey Kopp ♂️ (@jeffreykopp97) September 9, 2020
Covering superheroes, anything dark, horror, and more! Lead writer for Fan Fest