There have been many things that we’ve found especially weird about the announcement that Andrew Lincoln is departing The Walking Dead during season 9, but one of the strangest ones is this: The radio silence from AMC and Lincoln himself on the subject.
What’s going on with that? On the surface, the simple answer here appears to be that this is not an announcement that the network was planning to make for quite some time. They may have been looking to have some news come out on this later this summer (take, for example, San Diego Comic-Con) or after the show returned this fall. When the reports first came out, it seemed to surprise many including major trade publications who regularly do interviews with the cast and crew. All of this points towards something that was either recently decided, or something that was heavily under wraps for quite some time.
So why isn’t AMC addressing it now? Seemingly, this is a network sticking to their guns with what their original plan was for an announcement … at least to an extent. When they arrive in San Diego a little bit later in the summer, it feels inevitable that this is a subject that they are going to have to take on. How can they avoid it? This will mark an opportunity to hopefully explain more as to what happened here, why the decision was made for Andrew to leave at this time, and also what happens to Rick Grimes in the process. It’s hard to imagine the character exiting with Rick surviving, mostly because the argument would be made then to have the cameras continue to follow Rick in some capacity even if he wasn’t around the group. Yet, we also recognize that these writers are a fairly creative bunch and they may be able to come up with a reasonable way in which to make this work.
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