There was big news for The Walking Dead today. Not only was the series officially renewed for its ninth season, but there were big behind the scenes news as well with showrunner Scott Gimple being promoted to chief content officer for the entire Walking Dead television universe and Angela Kang being promoted to executive producer and showrunner. But while these announcements are huge, for fans of the AMC series the announcement may have given something else to get excited about -- potential spinoffs.
In the official press release announcing the leadership changes and new season, there was a particular line teasing an expansion of the Walking Dead universe.
"Current showrunner Scott M. Gimple is being elevated to Chief Content Officer, overseeing the entire Dead television universe, including The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead, and potential brand extensions on a variety of platforms," the release read.
While it's important to note that the statement doesn't indicate that there are currently any projects in development at any stage, it does indicate that the network is considering expanding the universe and potentially beyond just television. The specific mention of "variety of platforms," opens the door to things such as video games, movies, and interactive content. The Walking Dead has previously explored content outside of direct tv spinoffs. There have been, to date, three web series based on The Walking Dead released via AMC's website -- Torn Apart (2011), Cold Storage (2012), and The Oath (2013) -- as well as an animated comic book in 2011 in addition to AMC's Fear the Walking Dead which debuted in 2015.
And while there may not be anything specifically in development at this point, having Gimple oversee the entire Walking Dead universe no doubt gives everything a sense of continuity. Gimple has been with The Walking Dead since the show's second season, starting out as a writer and producer, later moving on to supervising producer, and moved to executive producer and showrunner going into the show's fourth season. Gimple also presided over the show's highest-rated episode and is excited not only to be in the position to take the universe to the next level, but for Kang's upcoming work as showrunner as well.
"The Walking Dead is a special show which started in an entirely different era of TV, and continues, in this new era, to confidently take chances to tell compelling stories that excite audiences and make them deeply connect with its characters, adapting Robert Kirkman’s brilliant comic book,” Gimple said. “As the show closes in on its tenth year, I’m honored to keep working with the talented, dedicated people behind and in front of the camera to make it all it can be, while expanding the world of The Walking Dead with new narratives like Fear the Walking Dead and a whole host of truly cool stories ahead. Angela is a big part of the heart and soul of The Walking Dead, and I’m thrilled to help facilitate her vision of the show’s next era.”
The Walking Dead returns for the second half of its eighth season on February 25, 2018. For complete coverage and insider info all year long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.