And there you have it, folks. The final episode of The Walking Dead to star Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes has aired. We’ve known about his exit for a few months now, but it’s still hard to imagine the show that he’s carried for nine years going on without him. But carry on it must, and as it turns out, Rick isn’t exactly gone for good.
If you watched tonight’s outing, you’ll know that the character’s mortally wounded and was last seen being taken away by helicopter. So, that leaves the door open to continue his story and sure enough, that’s what AMC’s decided to do, with the network announcing that they’re working on a series of AMC Studios Original Films, with the first one going into production next year.
Andrew Lincoln will be back as Rick and from what we understand, movie number one will “explore the story of where Rick’s taken and what he faces in a new corner of the zombie apocalypse.” Speaking about what to expect in a recent press release, here’s what Chief Content Officer Scott M. Gimple had to share:
“We have a lot on the horizon – starting with a new epic featuring one of the greatest leading actors in television history and one of the best people I’ve ever met. These films are going to be big evolutions of what we’ve been doing on the show, with the scope and scale of features.
We’re starting with the first part of the continuing story of Rick Grimes, and there is much more on the way, featuring yet-unseen worlds of The Walking Dead and faces from the show’s past, as well as new characters we hope to become favorites, told by TWD veterans and emerging voices. We want to break new ground with different, distinct stories, all part of the same world that’s captured our imagination for nearly a decade of the Dead.”
Meanwhile, David Madden, president of original programming for AMC, SundanceTV and AMC Studios, added:
“We believe this is a world and narrative with many possibilities and opportunities for character development and we’re excited to expand the series into a franchise that can live across multiple formats. For many years, fans have talked about things in the apocalypse they want to see and now we have an opportunity to explore those stories, beginning with the character who started it all, Rick Grimes.”
Of course, this won’t be Lincoln’s only return to the world of The Walking Dead, as it’s already been confirmed that he’ll be back to direct an episode of the TV show. Though he’ll remain strictly behind the camera on that occasion.
For now, at least, his time on the series is done. But fans can still take comfort in the fact that they haven’t seen the last of Rick Grimes, as AMC fully intends on continuing his story and it sounds like they have big, big plans in store for both him and the franchise as a whole.