Robert Kirkman’s The Walking Dead has become bigger than even he could have possibly managed. Spawning a spin-off series, popular after show, video games, whole conventions devoted just to the show and now the Walkers might be invading…Cinemas and streaming services!
A new story coming from Bloomberg lays out AMC’s ambitious, possibly insane, plan to continue The Walking Dead in some shape or form for the next 10 years. While specifics haven’t been ironed out yet, AMC is likely planning “several movies for a TV network or streaming service that could spin off into different series.” They also want to take the show internationally, setting at least one potential spin-off series in another country.
Scott Gimple, who produced several seasons of The Walking Dead, is leading the development of different shows. As of now, AMC is weighing a choice between producing every Walking Dead-related property themselves, or possibly bringing in an outside party – like a streaming service – “that can provide money and global exposure.” The plan is to air all new shows on AMC while also bolstering their own streaming service, AMC Premiere.
“Ownership of that content – call it Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead – allows us to determine the fate of that content, so we can navigate as we choose,” said Chief Executive Officer Josh Sapan. All of this news comes on the heels of the fact that viewership for The Walking Dead is declining. As the Bloomberg piece points out, “After peaking at 19 million nightly viewers in 2015, the audience for The Walking Dead declined to an average of 11 million in the most recent season.”
Some might see this as a sign of dwindling interest in the show, but like any good zombie show, as long as you have an engaging human element and keep the setting fresh, this franchise can literally go on forever. The best way to breath new life into the series is to place the zombie apocalypse in a new setting people don’t normally associate with a zombie story. Fear The Walking Dead has moved the characters from Los Angeles to Mexico and now to Texas. Each time a new element of the surroundings is incorporated. For example, this season on Fear featured Walkers dealing with horrific storm conditions. Not only do the human protagonists have to contend with a Walkers but now they have to worry about dangerous weather conditions.
This is still much to be gained from a Walking Dead franchise and AMC is going to keep going to that well as long as there is water.
The Walking Dead season 9 premieres on October 7th, 2018.