The Walking Dead has finally come to an end. Well, at least the main show will be coming to a close. AMC announced that season 11 (!) will be the main series’ final sendoff. And to make things extra special, the eleventh season will consist of a super-sized episode order. The last goodbye for the series will have 24 episodes for fans to chew on. The first batch of 12 episodes will air in 2021 and the last batch of 12 episodes will air in 2022. So, you still have two full years of The Walking Dead to look forward to.
AMC informed The Walking Dead cast that their show would be ending in a letter. You can read the full text of the letter below…
As you may have seen in the press, we’ve come to a very big moment.
After our next, supersized season that will span a couple years, The Walking Dead will be coming to an end.
For all of us — especially those who have been a part of this show for the better part of a decade — this is a seismic announcement. Just to break it down:
- Season 11 will be the final, extended season of The Walking Dead, running 24 episodes, probably shooting until early 2022. (We say “probably,” being optimistic but recognizing current production-pandemic uncertainties that affect the schedule.)
- A Carol & Daryl spinoff has been greenlit by AMC for 2023.
- Tales of The Walking Dead, an anthology series, is in development, as well as other possible TWD series/expressions.
We can’t believe the end is upon us, however far away it is. This crew, this cast, these writer/producers and producers are the show. You are this show’s immediate future of 30 astounding episodes to fulfill our epic story and you will be among those who seal its legacy in entertainment history.
We have reached millions around the world, and we will continue to reach millions more. There’s a lot of work ahead of us, a lot of opportunities to be there for each other, to bring out each other’s best, to bring our show to new heights of excellence.
We’re lucky to have an audience that has stuck by us over ten years of massive change in the world. We hope to have been a point of stability in people’s lives — something they could count on every week (or as part of a late summer binge) to make them feel — happy, heartbroken, intrigued, scared, excited, inspired. Maybe a little grossed out. Maybe considering things about their own life. Maybe considering who they are. People will need those feelings again. And that stability again. And we can give that to them with this epic final season, the last chapter of a multi-year saga of people figuring out how to live in a broken world.
There is hard work, good times, and amazing moments ahead. The only way we can climb this mountain of episodes is how we’ve always done it: together. Let’s begin the long road to the end, standing side by side, in solidarity to do some awesome stuff with all the people who got us here, for all the people who got us here.
As ever, we are The Walking Dead.
– Scott M. Gimple & Angela Kang
It should be noted that only the main series, The Walking Dead, is meeting its demise. Spinoff series Fear the Walking Dead is still set to air its sixth season this October, as well as the new spinoff The Walking Dead: World Beyond in the very same month. There have also been two new spinoff series announced following the cancellation of The Walking Dead. One series will focus on fan favorites Daryl and Carol, played by Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride respectively, and the other spinoff will be an anthology series called Tales of the Walking Dead.
So, while The Walking Dead will meet its end, it is also going to be more alive than ever before. There are still plans to make multiple feature films starring Andrew Lincoln as former lead character Rick Grimes. And if any of these spinoffs are as popular as the main show, it is likely that they could go on for an equally long time.
Exactly what could be in store for the landmark series’ final run of episodes? There are some exciting possibilities that might even include the return of fan favorites. It isn’t uncommon for former cast members to return to a long-running show in order to give it a proper goodbye. The Walking Dead was a turning point for many acting careers and it would be a great treat to the fans to see a few familiar faces for the show’s last hurrah.
The Walking Dead has been an undeniable phenomenon on cable and it is likely that this cancellation has less to do with the show’s popularity and more to do with concentrating on new avenues to take the franchise. The Daryl/Carol spinoff will likely act as a direct extension of the main series while the other spinoffs will be able to experiment with new ideas and characters. Will fans be open to these new directions? Or will the cancellation act as the beginning of the end for everything The Walking Dead? Creator Robert Kirkman ended the comic book series last year. Is this the start of The Walking Dead slowly meeting its end?
No one knows for sure, but the only thing we do know is that The Walking Dead itself will finally reach the end of its journey in the next two years. It has been a tumultuous ride but it will surely go down as one of the biggest pop culture phenomenons in television history. That alone deserves some respect.