The Walking Dead has officially sired a third series. In addition to the flagship show and its first spin-off, Fear the Walking Dead, The Hollywood Reporter says AMC has granted a 10-episode order to a new zombie drama, which will follow two female leads in a Lord of the Flies-like story centered around the first generation of kids to come of age during the apocalypse.
Matt Negrete, who has served as a writer and producer on The Walking Dead for the past five seasons, will serve as show-runner on the new program, T.H.R. reports. Most details are being kept under wraps, but we do know the series is expected to premiere in 2020. AMC describes the series with a vague summary: “Some will become heroes. Some will become villains. In the end, all of them will be changed forever. Grown-up and cemented in their identities, both good and bad.”
At the very least, maybe this program will provide longtime Walking Dead viewers a respite from the droves of dumb, doomed children that at this point have become an unfortunate hallmark of the franchise. (Yes, Judith has been portrayed as hyper-capable—but she also does things like running after dogs in grueling blizzards, so . . .)
Its probably also worth noting that Negrete collaborated with Walking Dead chief content officer (and former show-runner) Scott Gimple on Rick Grimess exit episode—although T.H.R. says its unknown if Andrew Lincoln could appear in the new series. (Both Melissa McBride, who plays Carol, and Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl, have contracts that allow them to appear in various projects across the franchise—so they, too, could conceivably pop up in the new show as well.)
Despite significant and ongoing ratings losses—Season 9s finale was the lowest-rated in the franchises history—The Walking Dead remains a solid performer for AMC. As T.H.R. notes, it is still the No. 1 cable drama in the key 18 to 49 demographic, with Fear the Walking Dead nabbing fourth place. The franchise already has a Rick Grimes-focused movie trilogy on the way, with further franchise expansions expected to come in the future.
“Showing audiences an unseen pocket of The Walking Dead universe steeped in a new mythology is a very cool way to celebrate a Decade of the Dead on TV and over 15 years of [creator] Robert Kirkmans brilliant comic,” Gimple said. “Matt Negrete is one of the best writer-producers in T.W.D.s long history—Im thrilled to be working beside him to tell stories unlike weve seen before, taking our first step into an even larger world.”
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