Twenty Years of THE WALKING DEAD?
The Walking Dead showrunner Scott M. Gimple feels there’s a lot of life left in the AMC zombie series.
Speaking at PaleyFest, Gimple said, “We are trying to do twenty years. The comic has certainly done it, and I look forward to every issue. The Simpsons has been on 26, 27 years, so that’s a challenge — so OK, challenge accepted. Done.”
Though it’s still top dog, The Walking Dead has declined in viewers as of season seven. That doesn’t concern Gimple, who says of preventing viewer fatigue, “We try to reinvent the show every eight episodes. We have this story that is a fidelity to the comic book, but we’re also exploring original stuff, and those things help us go on every year. We want to try do it better, do things we haven’t done, take risks. It’s scary as hell, but as long as we keep doing that the show can go on and on.”
When asked of the hit series’ longevity in January 2016, AMC network programming boss Joel Stillerman said, “The answer to how long the show will go on in some way is directly correlated with the health of the storytelling in the comics. Those comics are firing on all cylinders. [Robert Kirkman] still writes every line of dialogue in those books, and is as engaged as he was when I think he was sitting around in Kentucky writing the first issue. That is very much part of the DNA of the show. He sort of felt like, in real life, this goes on for a very long time. We’re along for that ride.”
In that same conversation, AMC chief Charlie Collier added AMC is “not actively talking about the end of The Walking Dead,” but rather focusing on ensuring the number one show on television stays fresh. “As a brand, we’re very sensitive to making sure that every aspect of it feels fresh and original, and that it’s not treated in any way that’s derivative or taken for granted. Our planning is current and future-focused, and it is not focused on the end at this time.”
The Walking Dead will air its seventh season finale this Sunday ahead of returning this fall for the premiere of its eighth season.