The Walking Dead‘s Norman Reedus, who’s already declared that he hopes to stay with the series until its end, says he would only consider leaving the zombie drama if “the show ever lost track of what it was.”
Though executive producer Gimple said in 2017 that The Walking Dead was eyeing a 20-year run, Reedus argues that a targeted endgame would prevent the hit show from shambling on as a “watered down” imitation of its former self. That being said, given that Reedus and longtime co-star Melissa McBride both inked mega-franchise deals ahead of season 10, it seems their involvement is secured for at least three more years.
Of course, the series was recently forced to evolve in the wake of the shocking departure of longtime leading man Andrew Lincoln, whose Rick Grimes was permanently written off the show in favor of a jump to the budding movie side of the franchise. Now, The Walking Dead has found renewed life under new showrunner Angela Kang, who replaced Scott Gimple when he vacated that position after a promotion to chief content officer of the Walking Dead brand for AMC.
Nearly a decade into the apocalypse, the continued erosion of the world has now resulted in a Western vibe and a refreshed focus on survival-driven drama. As for Reedus in particular, his character Daryl Dixon retreated into the life of a loner woodsman who’s only recently been drawn back towards his fellow survivors, now caught in the middle of a clash with a barbaric enemy group known as the Whisperers.
As he’s a firm fan-favorite and just signed a very lucrative contract, it’s hard to see the actor going anywhere anytime soon. And with Reedus already having shown his commitment to The Walking Dead, we imagine he’ll be sticking around right until the end.