The Walkers may finally add Rick Grimes to their number.
Collider reports The Walking Dead star Andrew Lincoln will leave the series by the end of its upcoming 9th season. While the details of his departure are unknown, the site claims the actor will only appear in “half-a-dozen episodes” before he makes his final bow as Rick. The report also claims co-star Norman Reedus will take Lincoln’s place as the program’s lead with a substantial salary increase.
Lincoln has been part of the series since the beginning — indeed, The Walking Dead begins as Rick’s story — and has been one of its greatest advocates across the years. I’ll admit that while I’m not a fan of the series, I always enjoyed talking to him at Comic-Con or red carpet events. He loved the series and saw in a very special light.
Nonetheless, even a beloved part can become taxing as it prevents an actor from playing other parts. And after nine seasons on the show, exiting at this juncture would appear to make sense. Law & Order: Special Victims Unit star Christopher Meloni chose to leave the show after 12 years while his co-star Mariska Hargitay remained, eventually becoming a producer on the series. Meloni’s reason for leaving was down to a certain creative boredom many actors feel after playing a part in a long-running series. It is possible Lincoln feels the need to play someone besides Rick; a need strong enough to walk away from the high profile series.
The Walking Dead returns later this year.
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