It looked like Andrew Lincoln, originally, was going to be done with The Walking Dead after his character of Rick Grimes was transported away from the rest of the group to, presumably, never be seen again. But as with all productions, if you don’t see a dead body (and sometimes even if you do) there is still the possibility a character will return. And that’s going to be the case with Lincoln who is set to reprise the role soon. He gave an interview with SFX that gave some inkling into what will happen with Grimes’ return to The Walking Dead universe.
The first question fans are going to want to have around Andrew Lincoln is whether Rick Grimes would be coming back for Season 11 of The Walking Dead. We last saw the character in Season 9 when he was transported away in a helicopter, hooked up to medical equipment, and told he was going to “be fine”. Where he was going wasn’t clear and we didn’t know if we’d ever see him again. About his role in this next season of The Walking Dead, Lincoln was clear but only in his ignorance about the situation. Basically, he said, “I have no idea” when it came to whether he’d make an appearance.
From this standpoint, it seems like there is still a distinct possibility the writers can set up the return for Andrew Lincoln in this next season of the show. There’s a chance they simply haven’t finalized all of the plot arcs and storylines for this season, leaving open the possibility that the group meets back up with Grimes along the way. Now, this is to say there isn’t a question about the character returning, we know Grimes is in fact coming back. It’s not a manner of if, just when.
That’s because Andrew Lincoln is slated to appear in the planned The Walking Dead movie which is currently in pre-production. This film is presumably set to take place in the aftermath of whatever goes down in Season 11. But that’s just a guess. It could actually end up picking up with where we last saw Rick getting into the helicopter. The way TWD has told its stories over the years, with the splintering of groups and disappearances of characters, there is a wide range of possibilities with future stories. We could see Season 11 begin to get Rick back into the mix or the whole thing could be saved for a future film. It appears even Andrew Lincoln isn’t in the inner circle when it comes to these plans.
Andrew Lincoln did say that he’s set to appear in at least a few The Walking Dead movies. He said in the same interview that he had signed on for multiple films in the franchise though he didn’t specify how many. It could be up to three which would solidify the idea that we will fully understand the future of Rick Grimes. In this way, it’s not even all that problematic if Lincoln did not appear in this season of the show. Fans won’t have to sweat out the mystery because they know he’s, at minimum, coming back on the big screen.
With or without Andrew Lincoln, The Walking Dead is set to begin airing Season 11 in August of this year and have it run through the beginning of 2022. It’s a still expanding franchise with plenty of stories on the way. And we know we’ll eventually find out the fate of the character who started the whole thing.