by Graham Pierrepoint
The Walking Dead remains one of AMC’s biggest hitters, being a long-runner which – despite claims of wavering quality from some viewers – remains a massive hit with its target audience. The zombie survival series – which has never actually referred to the undead involved as ‘zombies’ at all – has seen a number of high profile stars join and depart, and while only a few big stars still remain on the show since its first season, it seems that a very big name indeed is set to bow out in the near future – leaving the door open to a co-star to earn top billing.
If you’ve yet to find out who this star is and would like to avoid knowing more, stop reading here!
The star in question is Andrew Lincoln, who plays lead character Rick Grimes – who will apparently be leaving the show during its landmark ninth season, which is yet to air. Grimes has been at the forefront of the cast since its inception, and as such, some fans are concerned as to what the future for the show at large may be. There will now only be two actors left on the cast who remain from the original run of episodes – Melissa McBride (Carol Peletier) and Norman Reedus (Daryl Dixon) – with the latter reportedly having been lined up for a quick deal to replace Lincoln as the face of the show.
▶ 'The Walking Dead' Andrew Lincoln Leaving the Series
The Hollywood Reporter advises that Reedus has been approached with a deal which would make him one of the most highly-paid stars on TV – reportedly claiming more than some stars of HBO’s rival series Game of Thrones – and which would effectively put fan favorite Daryl front and centre. The team behind The Walking Dead has long eluded to the fact that the show could survive beyond its main stars, and while an exit strategy for Lincoln’s character has set to be made public, there is general rumor which suggests that he will get out of the series alive – making him far luckier than much of his fellow cast contemporaries.
▶ Andrew Lincoln to Exit 'Walking Dead,' Norman Reedus Negotiating $20M-Plus New Deal
The Walking Dead remains one of the longest-running and most avidly-watched shows of its kind – and with no end in sight, will Lincoln’s choice to leave the show transform it for the better, or for the worse? Change is on the horizon – keeping watching to learn more.