The Walking Dead Season 10 is expected to delay its late 2020 debut on Netflix and could begin streaming in 2021, after AMC has aired its postponed season finale delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic. The Greg Nicotero-directed season finale, "A Certain Doom," was scheduled to air on AMC Sunday, April 12, before the release date was pushed until later this year when post-production was unable to be completed amid industry-wide shutdowns caused by coronavirus. The episode, which has not yet announced a new air date, pits Daryl (Norman Reedus), Negan (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) and other survivors against the zombie horde steered by Whisperer Beta (Ryan Hurst), who has trapped their allies inside a hospital hideout surrounded by the undead.
Full seasons of The Walking Dead are added to Netflix five months after a season finale's television premiere. Season 8 reached Netflix on September 24, 2018, some five months after the April 15 airing of its season finale; Season 9, which ended March 31, 2019, was available to stream five months later on September 1 of that year.
Additionally, the release of full seasons to Netflix coincide with the return of new episodes on AMC. Season 8 was available to stream two weeks before the October 7, 2018 season premiere of Season 9; that season arrived on Netflix some four weeks before the Season 10 premiere aired October 6, 2019.
"You have to edit the episode, then you do sound effects, and then you do music, and then visual effects, and then color timing to make sure all the colors in all the scenes match, and then you have to do a quality check to make sure nothing is messed up," Nicotero recently told Entertainment Weekly of the postponed season finale. "So there are all these steps that have to happen, and generally speaking, the way our production schedule works is those happen up to about three weeks before the episode airs."
Nicotero continued, "We were really on our way to the finish line when things started slowing down because of the stay at home work order. So we just missed that window. It wasn't that the effects were delayed or anything was delayed. It was just the delivery of the episode was set to be delivered at a specific date and we had to shut down before they hit that date."
"We're very, very close to finishing. I think actually, by the time the world is safe for people to start venturing out, probably all of the effects will be done, and then it's just a handful of processes and it can be turned around very, very quickly," Kang said. "We're very hopeful that we can get it all done very rapidly once we're back up and running."
The Walking Dead will air its Season 10 finale as a special episode on AMC later this year. For all things TWD, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.
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