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AMC's Walking Dead Spin-Off Premise Revealed?

The Walking Dead Spin-OffAMC has promised that its in-the-works Walking Dead spin-off will shed light on a new, previously unseen corner of the zombie apocalypse — perhaps one where the living outnumber the undead.

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There’s increasing buzz that the offshoot will be a prequel of sorts, one that would chronicle the early days of the epidemic and the effort to contain it. (An AMC rep declined to comment.)

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In a recent interview with IGN, series creator Robert Kirkman — who is shepherding the spin-off along with fellow Walking Dead EPs Gale Anne Hurd and David Alpert — confirmed that the new series will be set in a “different location” and feature “completely different people,” adding. “It definitely won’t be set in Georgia… It’s important to us that this show exists on its own. The spin-off has to be a show worthy of existing, or else we’ve all sold out.”

Insiders caution that the project is in the very early stages of development and nothing is set in stone. Translation: Even if this is the plan, it could very well change. AMC is eying a 2015 launch for the show so there’s no rush.

Thoughts? Does the idea of a prequel-ish Walking Dead — following an entirely new cast of characters — appeal to you? Hit the comments!

Comments are monitored, so don’t go off topic, don’t frakkin’ curse and don’t bore us with how much your coworker’s sister-in-law makes per hour. Talk smart about TV!

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97 Comments
  1. D'Arcy says:

    Which part is the new information?…

  2. Drew says:

    They should set it in Texas. I think people would stand a good chance against zombies there. Lots of guns and people who know how to use them.

  3. Danielle says:

    I’d watch that.

  4. wrstlgirl says:

    Actually yes it does. I’m usually against the whole “spin off” idea, especially lately since there have been so many, but if this is a complete stand alone series based on how the apocalypse began I’m all for it.

    • Kristen says:

      I guess I’m just curious how long a series like this can go on until it becomes just like TWD. There’s really no suspense in doing a show where there aren’t walkers yet, b/c we know what it’s building up to… ultimately removing any possible “build up”. Then once there are walkers, how long until we start seeing these people face the same dangers and issues. It just doesn’t seem like enough to keep me THAT interested. I could be wrong though…

  5. Alex says:

    Yes I’m interested. It all depends on the execution of course but the concept sounds intriguing. I will definitely tune in.

  6. Guest says:

    Personally, I’ve always wanted to see the story of Dr. Jenner and Subject 19 before the outbreak

  7. Amy says:

    I’d like to see what the rest of the world is like.

  8. Kevin says:

    I feel like if it was a prequel to when Rick woke up l there wouldn’t be enough time for much action. Like how long was the apocalypse going on for before he woke up? Enough for the flowers in the pilot to die…..

    • Jace says:

      In one of Jenners video logs, he said it was about 62 days since the outbreak went global, and since it was only a few days between Rick waking up, and the group reaching the CDC, that means Rick was in hospital for 2 months at least.

      • Reeky Ricardo says:

        About that. Just how does a grievously injured man exist without water for 7 weeks, medically induced coma or not. Why were the lights in the hospital still marginally functional when Morgan implied that the facility had gone south long before. Will Laura Palmer be joining the cast? These issues must be addressed.

        A spin-off with no main characters, rather just an intersection of short stories such as A meets B,C, & D with everyone’s arc ending except for D’s who then meets E,F, & G repeating the process ten or so times a season would be a most ambitious format.

        P.S. — The girl killed the two sickies. This is proven by small bloody hand print on the door to the barbecue pit. It’s a detail a little more subtle than the Hannah bracelet. Carol took responsibility–as she did for her injuries with Leonard in the E.R.–because for all her toughness she still suffers from survivors guilt over the loss of Sofia. Spender is Mulder’s half-brother and their father is the Smoking Man. Who ever would have thought that Carol would have become the most complex character on the show. Laurie is still alive, is creeping around in the tombs with Judith, and the creepy dude in the jean jacket is…gasp…her father.

        • SABabs says:

          I’m not sure Rick was without water for 7 weeks. The hospital could have been accessible to staff and visitors for a long time after the global outbreak, so Shane may have blockaded him in his room fairly recently. However, I will grant you that it’s unlikely that the one IV bag had enough fluid in it to last long enough for the flowers to soak up all their water and completely dessicate.

    • Dennis says:

      Also, take a look at the webisodes. I think they will shed some light on the time lapse from when Rick was shot through till he woke up. Besides, doesn’t the webisodes pretty much fill the void of a prequel?

  9. Dee says:

    I think it’s a good idea that can be great with the right cast/crew/writers, etc. I would love to see this start up North and see how they fare in cold climates. Someplace outside of DC, NYC, Boston. We’ve seen the CDC headquarters – how about other forms of government.

  10. Lilly says:

    If done right – and especially if it shows in the off season to fill my TWD fix when that show is on hiatus – I’m all in!

  11. Ellie says:

    I would like to see more about how the whole thing started and how people first reacted to the outbreak.

  12. sarah says:

    i think the original is more than enough we don’t need 2 zombie shows, it’s a great show just stick with that and keep the writing and the story lines good.instead of a aequal

  13. April Smith says:

    I would absolutely love it if they focused on the early days of the outbreak. But I would want it to follow the current characters on The Walking Dead. Maybe show where they were when the outbreak first happened and the events leading up to season 1 of TWD.

  14. TV Gord says:

    I’m definitely interested in seeing how the plague of walkers began! I’m also curious about whether it has spread to other parts of the world or whether they were able to contain it to North America in time.

    • TV Gord says:

      Also, why are all forms of communication shut down? Aren’t there other parts of the country or the world where people could be contacted? Surely there must be pockets of the world where the living humans are winning.

    • mmartian says:

      If it were contained to North Americal, the United States, Canada and Mexico would be nothing more than a radiated wasteland. India, China, Russia, England even France would take quick action. On the plus side there would be a lot fewer nukes in the world

      • ZomB says:

        France would actually act first, their policies make the rest of the world look like Hand I, they have quite nearly stated that if it comes to it, they will be the first to launch nuclear missiles.

    • Debra says:

      Jenner talked about how it’s all over the world when they were at the CDC. He said the French was the last to hold out. There’s no communication because there’s no power in the facilities. What happened at the CDC is what happened everywhere.

    • David says:

      season 1’s finale revealed it spread globally and the french were the last ones trying to find a cure…

    • Rick Grimes says:

      The virus spread globally, according to Dr. Jenner at the CDC in Season 1.

    • Austin says:

      It did spread to the rest of the world. Back in season one at the CDC Jenner said the french were the furthest at finding a cure till communication went down

    • mike says:

      In season 1, the Dr. at the CDC said the french were the last holdouts and that they thought they were close to a cure. That leads me to believe the virus (or whatever it is) is global and not confined to the U.S. As far as a spinoff is concerned, I’m not sure how that would work but, I would check it out.

  15. Annie says:

    It’s the one thing I didn’t like about TWD – I understand *why* the decision was made (I’m presuming in the novels) not to show the origins and the first discoveries, but it always rang false to me that the question isn’t ever even asked. (I may have missed an episode, to be sure. But I don’t even recall Rick asking the question after the pilot. Always seemed weird to me.)

    • Lyn says:

      I agree! Another location very different from rural Georgia could be interesting, but if they again fail to fill in any of the backstory of the pandemic, I’ll be really disappointed.

    • SABabs says:

      I agree. I like the show, but I’ve never really bought the whole scenario to begin with. Other zombie movies with fast-acting virus sources make some sense, but in this show you have to actually die before turning into a zombie, and I just don’t buy that vast numbers of otherwise healthy humans were slow enough to be bitten by a zombie but fast enough to get away and die of the fever. Or there should be a LOT MORE walkers stumbling around with their throats and guts torn open since those seem to be the human parts that walkers go for first. But most walkers we see are relatively whole – just dead by unexplained methods – car accidents, food poisoning, and heart attacks I guess. And there just aren’t enough completely incompetent military types to explain how all the military bases were overrun.

      I doubt anyone could come up with a believable explanation for how things go so out of hand, so
      going back and trying to show the beginning would just highlight the impossibility of the scenario.

      • Kryik says:

        The inspiration is Dawn Of The Dead, another great zombie story in which viewer interpretation is key. If you don’t believe it then you lack imagination. You seem to be used to infected instead of zombies also. TWD is traditional zombies,

  16. Ahhhh! Film it in New Mexico! We have good tax breaks, too, and it worked out well for Breaking Bad. Maybe even do a BB tie in somehow. I like Chris Hardwick’s BB/TWD tie-in. GOOD TIMES! I will help write it. Seriously. I live here and would love to be a writer for the spin-off.

  17. Liz says:

    I have always wanted to know how this began, what things were like in the early stages, when did cell phones and electricity cease, etc. This is a very cool concept and. I would definitely watch this show.

  18. John Moshier says:

    How about in another country may new Zealand they have a lot of tough cherecters there

  19. Tom Steward says:

    I think one of the untapped resources of post-apocalyptic fictions is the impact of the disaster/epidemic in a global frame (how do we know Planet of the Apes isn’t America of the Apes?) so I’m happy that the spin-off won’t be set in Georgia though I’m not sure we’ll get outside the US, unless some international franchise (a la Law & Order) is on the cards. I’m still curious to know why the French cure research center lasted longer than all the others! I’d prefer something running parallel to the events in TWD than a prequel, which tend to get a bit ‘there’s the origin of that one’, one that could lessen the burden on TWD to find new ways to obliquely suggest that there’s still some sort of infrastructure out there (the radio, the helicopters).

  20. Tom Charles says:

    the biggest thing they need to do is finally get into what exactly happened. I know Kirkman’s kinda always said it’s not important, but I still want to know.

  21. This is going to do nothing but water down a show that already struggles to fill 16 hours a year.

  22. Eve says:

    Not that this would actually work as a spinoff/sequel but I always wonder IF the zombies are wiped out, how would humanity move on? I mean everyone’s gotta be psychpathic or traumatised beyond belief. If you think the world is cruel now, imagine a post-post apocalyptic world. Even the kids like Carl have all had to do the hard stuff. Take what you want, kill who you want to, and the more ruthless and sinister, the higher you rise? I could imagine it would be like the militia rising in Revolution before the show started (ie. between the Intro and “15 years later”) how Monroe/Neville went from normal guys to pretty ruthless killers.

    • SABabs says:

      And there’s still the ever-present threat that would still exist whenever someone dies of any cause. Groups would have to forever be cautious of who’s around them, especially during sleep periods. I mean, how would you like to fall asleep next to your special snuggle-puss and wake up with him/her chewing on your throat (and not in a good way)? Would anyone ever feel comfortable again?

      This is why I like the prison scenario – each sleeper to his or her own cell, safe from unexpected walkers. Of course, you have to close the cells, which our group stupidly failed to do.

  23. LOST says:

    I’d very much like a spin-off investigating why the apocalypse happened and how to get past it.

  24. Jace says:

    I’d like to see this. I doubt they’ll explain how the outbreak happened, Kirkman has been adamant about that since his comic-only days, but seeing how everything became as bad as it is would be great, if only to stop some people constantly questioning how well armed militaries could be over-run. Granted, there will still be some of them complaining that it was stupid and unrealistic, but at least the question would be answered.

    • SABabs says:

      I guess I’m one of those who find the origins as presented (i.e., almost but not completely unexplained) to be “stupid and unrealistic”. Therefore my feeling is that trying to film it would be doomed to failure. Kirkman probably realizes this and is just saying, “get over it and don’t question it too much.”

  25. Batt Mallard says:

    There aren’t enough facts to show us where it started. Overseas would be cool, but I think half a season aboard a huge cruise ship would be great. It’s got more area than the prison and plenty of settings for a great story.

  26. Nope says:

    I don’t like this premise.. because we know the end.. it goes tits up.

  27. Agent M says:

    As Star Trek proved (with varying levels of success)…it’s a big universe. Lots of stories to tell. Problem is, “how it all went down” sounds like a movie or a miniseries. A whole series about the first days?

  28. amycorvus says:

    Reblogged this on Neon Disease.

  29. Sheldon W. says:

    Oddly enough, I missed a couple of eps of TWD toward the end of last season and discovered that I didn’t really miss it. Haven’t been back since.

  30. cj says:

    Well they would have to set it apart to contain it. I like the idea of the early days but not sure about focusing on efforts to contain it beyong a few weeks since if it’s a prequel we know that doesn’t work and will get old.

  31. Frank Darabont says:

    I would like the series to be similar to American Horror Story, where each season is its own story. They can follow a group of survivors in different areas of the world/ country and see how they deal with the outbreak. They could always have flashbacks to the original TWD to explore stories further, like Jenner, the cholos with the old folks, how Morgan turned out the way he did, the Governor and I really wish we would’ve gotten that planned episode/ story line of the soldier in the tank with Rick that Frank Darabont had planned.

  32. Ressle says:

    In my opinion having the spin-off take place somewhere over seas like the Uk or somewhere else would be pretty interesting because it can show how the infection isn’t only in America.

  33. liz says:

    I dont really care much for a prequel….seems unnecessary. But I’d be okay with just *another* Walking Dead series set somewhere else in the world. A new group of people, their relationships and struggles. I don’t see why a 2nd show couldn’t exist in the same time frame.

  34. I’m just wondering how long a series can go before the inevitable outbreak. Either way I’ll check it out.

  35. David says:

    A Walking Dead series set in Las Vegas with the lead role being a career gambler who counted cards and cheated casinos….with the main antagonist being the mob….the setting could be a noir-styled reimagination…. simply titled “DEAD VEGAS”

  36. atlwar says:

    set it in portland and have a real guy from the eastern part of the state, who is stranded there just because he came to sell “organic” products from his failing family farm, at a farmers market. He leads a bunch of hipster porlandites or portlanders or whatever to his farm 130 miles east just because of some hot neo-hippie chick he met there who makes scented candles and he wants to bang. Of course he should leave them there but she talks him into helping them. or they could set it in Brooklin with an upstate guy in the lead with the same premise.

  37. Bring more people to TWD says:

    Did anyone find it strange that in
    SEASON 2, Andrea killed zombie by
    stabing him in the eye. Michonne
    did the same thing to Gouverner
    and he didn’t die.. How can that be
    posible ?? And one more thing, Carl
    and Lizzy should fall in love… And
    bring back Andrea and Amy at least
    in one episode like flashback…

  38. Matt says:

    God i hate prequels. There is no suspense. “Efforts to contain the zombie outbreak”???? We already know those efforts fail so what is the point of watching? They would be better off just keeping with the same timeline but just in another situation.

  39. YK says:

    I don’t know why, but I’d love to see Naya RIvera in the main cast of the spin off, maybe because she is such a bad ass

  40. Noreen says:

    I am so excited at the spin-off of the Walking Dead. It will instantly become a hit. The concept of humans out numbering the dead, offers so many opportunities for character interactions. I know I’m ready for more dead! I live for Sunday nights.

  41. Abby says:

    Yes, but the characters would need to be compelling enough that once we get to say, two months after the Outbreak, which is where the original series/comics pick up, the characters are thrown into a situation/because of who they are (government, city dwellers trapped in NYC, etc) they are in different survival situations than the survivors down in Georgia. I want to be compelled by aspects/repercussions of the apocalypse that the main series can’t give me.

  42. Cinderangelkc says:

    Michael – please tell me your blind item isn’t about Norman Reedus leaving TWD to be in The Crow remake? I and may others would be crushed! Other than that it is all good. I would watch a spin off.

  43. MarieTM says:

    After reading some of the comments I have to say I would really like to see a prequel and as some have said a show running along the same time as the current TWD but elsewhere trying to find a cure or actually trying to end this thing rather than just merely surviving. I think a mix of the two take a group and have them in the midst of the apocalypse and trying to find a cure etc etc, but do occasional flash backs so we can see what happened in the beginning and have members of the group be from different places even different countries so we can see how it started and what happened throughout the world. Just my thoughts this is what I would like to see. More action and less just surviving I want to see people take action against what is happening.

  44. Kat says:

    I would like to watch a prequel that is centered around WHO as well other political action that occurred when the outbreak first began.

  45. alex says:

    I’m not going to say that a prequel with completely different characters would be bad. Only time can tell that. I was hoping to see Carol get her own show where she is the leader/important person of her own group. I would want the two shows kept very separate but maybe they could occasionally show different perspectives of the same events or fleeting glimpses of characters from the other show.

  46. Mark says:

    The show should be spun-off into every major city of the world, and show how people from different cultures are experiencing & surviving in the new world, I only assume that the zombie outbreak is global in scale but I could be wrong im not a writer.

  47. Travis says:

    I think there’s a lot of opportunity to show a totally different perspective of the zombie epidemic i.e. one that is more focused on people overcoming and rebuilding actual civilization, maybe going into more infected areas to reach out to and help other survivors or find a cure or something. Because, quite frankly, I think there are many places in the world, and in the US, where the zombie plague would be over fairly quickly. For one, zombies are slow and stupid (they can’t strategize or use tools) and bumbling — they’re really only threatening in numbers (or in forests/woods where they can hide or in close corridors). I used to live in eastern Colorado and would drive through Kansas from time to time, and I can tell you quite positively there is absolutely no way a zombie epidemic could take hold in many of the places in-between — just vast stretches of prairie where you can see for literally 50 miles in any given direction with only a few houses and villages dotting the landscape. These are places populated by rugged, pull yourself up by your bootstraps types of folks who also happen to like guns (and know how to use ‘em). With such miniscule population density combined with high visibility and well-armed pragmatic people who know how to hunt (animals that are far quicker and more cunning than the smartest zombie) and work the land, I really don’t see any logistic chance of a zombie plague getting a meaningful foothold. And there are tons of places like this in the US alone — the Dakotas, Nebraska, Wyoming, Vermont (mountainous with very fairly harsh winters — zombie snow men), Oregon, Washington, Nevada, etc. That’s all very nerdy, I know, but tell me you haven’t thought it yourself. Anyways, I think it would be really interesting to see people living in these areas band together, get a handle on their situation (kind of like Woodbury but with sane, reasonable leadership), and try to rebuild society. Add some light to the dark world of the Walking Dead and maybe even delve into the mythology of whatever started the plague to begin with — since Rick and crew definitely don’t have to time to seriously think about it.

  48. Mark H. says:

    I am all for it! Maybe they can air the shows when The Walking Dead is not on–something to fill in the long gaps between seasons…

  49. Carol Elsy says:

    Awesome idea. A new location and new characters could lead in entirely new directions. Chris Hardwick said he always asked what people do to figure out if they had usable skills. Who would prove the most useful, who would take the lead, what moral compass would they follow? It would also be interesting to see certain locations fall such as military bases, airports, cruise ships, schools, planes, trains. What about animals? Would killer whales eat zombies at Sea World? Would animals at zoos get out? Could anything take down a zombie? Bear? Wolves? Wild Dogs? Alligators? Would the animal population get out of control? Would things blow up? The questions and possibilities are endless. You could even do a wheel story with people from different areas heading toward a central point such as a base, island, mountain, etc. Can’t wait.

  50. Dennis says:

    Here’s a thought: How about following the exploits of the people or groups from the original series stayed put or moved on? Morales and his family were heading to Florida and you had the mini hispanic community with the elderly people in the warehouse (imagine their surprise of an old person dying in their sleep only to return as a walker.) You could even include Carol and Morgan as the main characters. This could have some real good possibilities if done right. I think Florida and the eastern seaboard would provide an excellent backdrop (with a few military installations scattered through out) for a Walking Dead sequel. Dealing with a hurricane, walkers, and harsh winters further up the coast. Now that would be a story.