Producer Hints The Walking Dead Could Have a Hopeful Ending

The Walking Dead executive producer Gale Anne Hurd wants to see the show go out on the same hopeful note as Robert Kirkman’s recently ended comic book, but says the show still has “a long way to go before we get there.”

“Well, that’s certainly more of a question, probably, for [TWD chief content officer] Scott Gimple and AMC and [showrunner Angela Kang], but I have to tell you, I read the comic book,” Hurd said at San Diego Comic-Con when asked how the book’s unexpected ending in July might inform the TV show.

“I fall into the camp of I thought it was brilliant — maybe part of it is because I so appreciated that Robert Kirkman thanked us [laughs], which he didn’t have to do — but I loved that it had a hopeful [ending], a hopeful world. And I was wondering how he was gonna pull that off, and I thought it was brilliant.”

The book ended with a lengthy time jump that caught up with Carl Grimes living a peaceful life with wife Sophia and young daughter Andrea, born into a world where walkers are seen so infrequently some have been corralled as a sideshow attraction.

“But we have a lot, we have a long way to go before we get there,” Hurd said.

“And the great thing about the television series is we can either jump ahead by a number of years or we could play those intervening years out in the show, and I think it really will be a question of decisions made at a higher level, but I think we have a great road map.”

Kirkman was also sure to reassure fans The Walking Dead won’t “spontaneously end” like its comic book counterpart, which published fake solicitations to preserve its surprise final issue.

“Anyone that’s concerned that the fact that this comic book wrapped up means that Season 10 is going to somehow spontaneously end on episode 4 as a surprise, that is not going to happen,” Kirkman said from Hall H during an earlier Comic-Con panel.

“There’s a lot more story to tell, and I’m very excited to be working with Scott and Angela to figure out if there are any other threads in the comic that we didn’t quite get to, to bring the world past that point. Because I think there is some story to tell when you’re talking about the world of The Walking Dead. So I’m very excited about that, so no worries there.”

AMC programming chief David Madden later said the cabler is happy with the performance of its flagship series, which has produced two spinoffs for the network.

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“I’m not saying the show will go 20 seasons,” Madden told TheWrap, “but I’m not saying it won’t.”

The Walking Dead Season 10 premieres Sunday, October 6 on AMC.