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Rick Grimes may have gone missing in Season 9 of The Walking Dead, but the character (played by Andrew Lincoln) will return in a trilogy of big-screen films set in Robert Kirkman's undead universe. While we don't know much about any of the movies right now, Scott M. Gimple (AMC's chief content officer for the Walking Dead franchise) is here to tease out the zombie flicks.
"The scale is bigger and the budget is bigger, and it’s The Walking Dead, but heightened, both in the narrative themes, but also in just what we see onscreen," he said during a chat with Entertainment Weekly. "I say heightened, but I should also say it’s also very different. It’s not going to be the exact same thing we saw on television, just larger. We are going in some wild new directions. Movies are a different beast than television. Television is like, boom, we’re done. Movies, to calibrate an hour and a half, two hours is no joke, and it’s been a lot of fun, but it’s a real challenge and we take it very seriously for the fans. We really want to deliver them something special, something worth their trip to the movies. We’re trying to be very deliberate and deliver something new."
Gimple also revealed that the script for the first entry in the cinematic Grimes series is still being worked on and that no director has been chosen.
"We are going to continue to tell Rick’s story, and we are going to discover so much of the world through that story. Rick will be challenged in different ways that, in some ways, everything that he’s been through has sort of prepared him for," he added. "It’s a much larger world than one that he had been operating in, and that was challenging in and of itself. Now things are heightened, and just as we’re going to the movies — and it is the movies proper, suitably wide screen — we’re going to be filling that screen with a brand new world."
Right now, AMC is also preparing for the release of its second Walking Dead spinoff, which is subtitled World Beyond. The show doesn't have a fixed premiere date just yet, but it is expected to shamble onto the airwaves sometime this year, focusing on young survivors from a larger settlement only teased up to this point.
Season 10, which marks Danai Gurira's final season as Michonne, will begin to air its second half on Sunday, Feb. 23.