The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman confirmed that the upcoming Season 9 of the show will be the last for Andrew Lincoln. Lincoln plays Rick Grimes and has portrayed the character since the pilot of the show, back in 2010. News of Lincoln's departure was rumored over a month ago, but this is the first time that his departure has been spoken about by Kirkman. It's hard to imagine The Walking Dead without Rick Grimes, but Kirkman promises that they have something "amazing planned."
While speaking to Kevin Smith at San Diego Comic-Con, Richard Kirkman delivered the sad news about Andrew Lincoln's departure from The Walking Dead. When Smith asked him directly about Lincoln leaving, Kirkman simply said, "It's looking that way," which is a real stunner for fans of the AMC show. Lincoln is the face of the show, so it will be interesting to see where the series will go after Season 9. Kirkman had this to say about Lincoln leaving the show.
"It does make the differences between the comic and the show more pronounced. But at the end of the day, it's all about Andrew Lincoln. This is a human being. This is someone I have known for almost a decade, somebody that I love. He's been sweating in Georgia, away from his family, for so long."
While Andrew Lincoln is leaving The Walking Dead, Robert Kirkman reveals that they all have something planned for the big exit. Kirkman revealed that Lincoln cares a lot about the fans and the show, so they have something "amazing" prepared. Kirkman wouldn't go into any further details, but it's looking like Season 9 might be the time for fans who have abandoned the series in recent times to give it another shot. Kirkman explains.
"He cares about the fans. He cares about the show deeply. He wants to do something special on the way out. We have something amazing planned. I wouldn't want to spoil anything, but anybody who has been a fan of his journey, who loves Rick Grimes, who loves the world of The Walking Dead, you're going to want to see what we do."
The Walking Dead Season 9 is expected to show Rick Grimes in a good place, or as good as he can be. According to showrunner Angela Kang, Rick will be dealing with a lot of different emotions during the course of the season after letting Negan live at conclusion of Season 8 as well as the death of his son, Carl. There's going to be a lot of Rick in the new season, which will reportedly show off his good nature and leadership abilities. With all of that said, Kang would not confirm or deny Andrew Lincoln's departure from the show.
The Walking Dead returns to AMC in October and it will hopefully answer some burning questions that fans have had about the last few seasons. However, now there are more questions, specifically, how will Rick Grimes make his grand exit from the hit series? What are these surprises that Robert Kirkman speaks of? We're just going to have to tune in to Season 9 of The Walking Dead to find out. Head over to The Hollywood Reporter to read more about what Kirkman had to say about Andrew Lincoln leaving the show.