AMC Networks purchased Riverwoods Studios, a company which had been operating under Raleigh Studios in Atlanta, Georgia, from Kudzu Productions LLC. Why? The Walking Dead, of course.
The nearly 80,000-square-foot studio houses The Walking Dead and only The Walking Dead on its four stages, acres of land, and various other on-property locations. It is the only studio in the country which dedicates all of its resources to one production year-round. The network bought the studio for $8.25 million.
While operating under Raleigh Studios, the studio has housed The Walking Dead since 2011. The second season was when the show started to call the location home, and it has since expanded to build the Hilltop location, the Oceanside houses, and the prison in Seasons Three and Four which has since been transformed into Negan's Sanctuary.
In fact, both the interior and exterior of a particular stage have been transformed into the show's popular villain's hideout, and despite popular belief, the prison location which it served as earlier in the series was created on the studio's lot and was never actually a Georgia prison.
Other sets built and housed by the studio include Father Gabriel's church which was torn down and, ironically enough, became the location of Negan's introductory beatdown of Glenn and Abraham. As for the Woodbury, Alexandria, and Terminus locations -- each was and is a real-world location dressed up to fit the apocalyptic vibes offered by The Walking Dead's zombie world.
The purchase by AMC should serve as an indicator of how long they plan to make The Walking Dead last. Purchasing the studio is not only an investment for future endeavors at the network but also proves The Walking Dead is not going anywhere any time soon. The cable juggernaut still nabs well over 12 million viewers on a down ratings week. For comparison, The Walking Dead's spinoff series Fear the Walking Dead was renewed for a fourth season while earning about four million viewers on an up week.
Fear the Walking Dead returns September 10th. The Walking Dead will return for its eighth season on October 22, 2017. For complete coverage and insider info all season long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.