Chandler Riggs Reveals Reaction To Leaving 'The Walking Dead'

When Chandler Riggs was revealed to be leaving The Walking Dead, fans were in an uproar wondering why the young actor would exit the show where he grew up. Riggs, however, remained optimistic.

Riggs found out his Carl Grimes character would be killed off just a couple of weeks before the episode which revealed the fate was filmed -- just two weeks before his eighteenth birthday. What appeared to be a flash forward of the future including his character was thought to be just that when he recorded it for the Season Eight premiere. Ultimately, Riggs was as surprised as anyone else to learn he would leave the show after a meeting with showrunner Scott Gimple, but reveals to ComicBook.com that he is actually quite excited about the future this opens for him.

"I joke about it, but I'm not really bitter about it," Riggs said, in reference to his character surviving so many years in the zombie apocalypse to trip, fall, and get bitten in Episode 8x06. "It's more like an innocent way to go out. That's kind of what Carl is really embodying in these last two episodes and really just kind of sums up Carl as a whole and proves that he knows that there is something after the war, it's not just killing and killing and killing and killing. There's got to be some sort of hope for Judith and for Maggie's baby and everyone."

"Again, I think everyone's reaction was just like surprised because it was definitely unexpected by everyone," Riggs added.

Riggs, a young actor very active on social media, is very much aware of the support he got from fans of the AMC show when Carl's bite mark sent shockwaves through audiences. "When it first aired, the amount of messages that I got on Reddit and the amount of comments that I got on Instagram and then Twitter and everything," Riggs said. "It was really just overwhelming with the amount of support coming from fans that were super sad to see my character go. The majority of them were just really, really excited to see where I go next and that's how the attitude that I had towards it and I'm really happy that a lot of my fans have the same attitude towards it as well and are excited to see what I do next."

"I think it's actually awesome that people have really watched me grow up and have been able to relate to a character on such a level as they've really just fallen in love with Carl and his life," Riggs added. "I think it's amazing to be a part of something that incredible. I think that's why it's such a phenomenon because people can relate to these characters on such a level and they like to put themselves in similar situations and see how they would act and what they would do. I think it's just such a relatable show that it's hard for people to not watch."

Riggs will continue an acting career beyond The Walking Dead, with a pair of movies already in the can and efforts to join films like Spider-Man: Homecoming and Solo: A Star Wars Story having been made in the past.

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Following The Walking Dead's Mid-Season Eight premiere on Sunday night, ComicBook.com's After the Dead will be live to recap Chandler Riggs' final episode with executive producer Greg Nicotero and more word from Riggs himself at 10:22 pm ET on ComicBook NOW's Facebook page and ComicBook.com Orginals' YouTube channel.

The Walking Dead returns for the second half of its eighth season on February 25, 2018. Fear the Walking Dead will debut its fourth season after The Walking Dead concludes its eighth, at 10 pm ET on April 15. For complete coverage and insider info all year long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.