In a revealing interview AMC networks president talks about what makes The Walking Dead so successful and the future of the TWD universe.
AMC is doubling down on The Walking Dead universe in a big way. The flagship show has already been renewed for season 11 and production will be starting on season 11 in just a couple of months. Fear The Walking Dead is currently filming season 6, and the latest addition to the franchise TWD World Beyond will debut in April. There are also a slate of feature films planned.
In a recent interview Scott Gimple said that the creative team that keeps TWD universe expanding is looking at exploring more stories of the apocalypse world and more formats including one off movies, limited series, and an anthology like series, among other options.
In an interview with the L.A. Times the president of AMC’s networks, Sarah Barnett, echoed Gimple’s enthusiasm for TWD universe and reiterated that the network is committed to expanding the universe. She said, “We’re plotting a lot more ambition for this,” she says. “I think there are endless stories to be told in this universe.”
Do fans want to continue exploring The Walking Dead universe? Judging by the ratings they definitely do. While live view numbers across the scripted cable spectrum slate have dropped consistently over the last few years as people move to delayed viewing and streaming TWD has remained the number one scripted cable drama on TV and when the show is hiatus Fear The Walking Dead slots in nicely and has also dominated its time slot.
The Heart Of The Walking Dead
Very few genre shows get the chance to air for 11 seasons, and TWD isn’t even slowing down at the 11 season mark. One of the reasons for the show’s continued success is that it’s a genre show that has the character development, narrative heft, and engagement of a drama. It’s a show that is driven by the characters and their relationships to each other, and there is some blood and gore and zombies too. When talking about the reason why The Walking Dead captured the imagination of millions of fans Burnett said, “The reason “The Walking Dead” became the phenomenon it did was not because it was a zombie show, but because it was a character show that happened to be about zombies.”
A Darker Universe
Those core relationships are definitely important, but there’s also been a distinct upgrade to the look and feel of The Walking Dead since showrunner Angela Kang took over. Overall fans have been thrilled with the amped up look of the show, which now has a true horror feel to it. It looks like that edgy darkness will become a hallmark of the brand judging by the similar gritty look of TWD World Beyond. Fear The Walking Dead already got an upgrade when it got a soft reboot in season 4. There are still many dark corners of the apocalypse landscape to explore and AMC is going to be bringing them to life for a long time to come.