Aside from The Walking Dead Holiday Special hitting AMC+ in about two weeks, fans of TWD universe have reached the end of the line for the year- but it didn't go quietly. Sunday night's The Walking Dead: World Beyond set up the limited series to take us into the heart of CRM during its final season run, and expose more of the threads connecting the paramilitary unit with TWD, TWD: World Beyond, and Fear TWD. Now, TWD universe's Scott M. Gimple is opening up about the future of the franchise in a recent interview– here are just some of the highlights:
Sorry, Rick Grimes fans. We may be learning more about CRM in the second season of TWD: WB and thus more about his potential situation- but don't expect Andrew Lincoln to be showing up any time soon. "You know what? I'm very happy to say… I'm not happy to say the answer. I'm happy to be definitive with people. It is not," Gimple responded when asked if the limited series would lead to Rick. "That's one, I don't know if people are being cagey about that. But I feel that one's important not to be cagey about. I think people could watch this show and learn a lot about the mythology that Rick Grimes is caught up in. And they might even see places where Rick Grimes has been. But yeah, he's not swinging around the corner. And I don't even know if I'm making people upset saying that, but I just don't like people watching it, sort of expecting Rick." That said, there will still be a lot for fans to learn about the world Rick's currently in: "people will learn a lot about the world that Rick is entangled in. So I think there is a great benefit to that."
Kim Dickens' Madison has been considered for the entire "TWD' universe. "I was in a chat for New York Comic Con, I think. I don't usually… I don't know. I don't usually have Q&As directly with the fans like that. I don't know why it just doesn't come up that much, which is something I should ask people about. But it was weird to be in that because, yeah, there were a lot of questions about Madison," Gimple said. "And it really is true that we're kicking a lot of things around, not just within… We've had discussions of 'Fear.' We've had discussions with 'Tales of the Walking Dead,' and then even within the 'Walking Dead' universe. There's all sorts of possibilities. We investigate that past a lot in stories, especially with 'Tales of the Walking Dead.' So if it were all to come together, it would be amazing, but there's some things floating around that are truly awesome."
If you like "Fear TWD" season six's story structure then you're going to love those six extra "TWD" episodes. "It's in the aftermath of 10A and 10B. It is a part of that story. It's connected to all that. Even like 'Here's Negan' obviously has to do with Negan's backstory, but even then, that is directly connected to the story coming out of season 10. These episodes, I mean… There were six episodes, six weeks. They were written in a… We had to go right at it. Angela [Kang], the staff, some writers from the past, from 'Walking Dead' past, some people who came back to actually work on them. Everybody just gave it their all," Gimple revealed. "And like 'Fear the Walking Dead,' they're concentrated stories because they're shot in a way where we only have a couple of characters that we're focusing on. I just love those kind of stories. It's weird, for all of the intensity and fire that was under everyone to turn out as well, they're amazing in that 'Here's Negan' is an incredible episode. It's really strange, the circumstances, how this all came together, but these six episodes are gonna be something that I think people are gonna really, really enjoy."
Gimple wants to reassure "TWD" universe fans that the future will be a blend of the new and the known. "We have the Carol/Daryl show, which in some ways is the centerpiece of what's moving forward. 'Tales' on the other hand is completely different. There isn't even a regular cast to that show. I think there's gonna be a mix of old favorites in various ways, whether they be specials, whether they be mini-series, whether they be on 'Tales,' and then things like Carol and Daryl, and rolled out in a way that we're not over-saturating people with it, but letting people have a steady flow of 'The Walking Dead' in their lives. That's our goal. We want that to be both very different and then some of those familiar faces. There's reinvention of the existing. And then there's the new stuff. So I think people have a real bright future ahead who love Walking Dead. They're gonna have a real variety with a steady flow for their lives."
Start those candles burning now for a "Richonne" reunion. After jokingly assuming the final question would be about the film project ("We are still working on the movie. It is proceeding."), Gimple was asked if fans have seen the last of Rick and Michonne (Danai Gurira) together- and he didn't mince words. "Oh. I mean, I really don't think so. I just said we were working on the movies, you asked that question, we'll leave it at that." But he didn't quite leave it at that- teasing that fans should go back and rewatch the way Michonne left the series. "It's weird, I was talking to somebody this afternoon, people should pay attention to the way that Michonne left the show," Gimple suggested. "There's something going on there. Yeah, King Bach [Bailey] was there. I'm very grateful to him. We probably haven't seen the end of him either. It was King Bach for a reason. But that was a pretty big group she was with."