The third series in the Walking Dead franchise is officially a go at AMC. On Monday the cable network announced a series order for a second spin-off of the megahit horror drama The Walking Dead.
The untitled series is co-created by Scott M. Gimple, chief content officer of the Walking Dead universe and former Walking Dead showrunner, and Matt Negrete, who has been a writer and producer on The Walking Dead for the past five seasons and whose credits include Andrew Lincoln's final episode and the Negan-introducing Season 6 finale. Negrete will be showrunner of the new series. Breaking from Walking Dead tradition of 16-episode seasons, Season 1 of the new series will be 10 episodes and will shoot in Virginia. (The Walking Dead is set in Virginia as of Season 9, but films in Georgia.) It is scheduled to premiere on AMC in 2020.
According to the network, the series "will feature two young female protagonists and focus on the first generation to come-of-age in the apocalypse as we know it. 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."
"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 fifteen years of Robert Kirkman's brilliant comic," Scott Gimple said in a statement. "Matt Negrete is one of the best writer-producers in TWD's long history -- I'm thrilled to be working beside him to tell stories unlike we've seen before, taking our first step into an even larger world."
The new series is the latest development in an ever-expanding Walking Dead universe that includes Kirkman's comic; the mothership series that will return for Season 10 in the fall; Texas-set spin-off Fear the Walking Dead, which returns for Season 5 on June 2; and a movie trilogy starring Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes, the first of which is expected to go into production this year.
The Walking Dead has experienced ratings erosion in the past few years, but remains the top-rated show on cable by a considerable margin and was the #4 overall show among viewers 18-49 in the 2017-18 season. Fear the Walking Dead is the #4 show on cable.
The Walking Dead is available to stream on AMC and Netflix.