AMC released some interesting news ahead of today’s presentation at the Television Critics Association press tour. The Walking Dead has been renewed for Season Nine. That’s not so interesting because, dispute declining viewership, the show is still the highest rated scripted program on television. The interesting part is that the series will be produced under a new showrunner!
Longtime showrunner Scott Gimple has been promoted to the position of “Chief Creative Officer.” This means he will be in charge of the entire Dead franchise, including Fear the Walking Dead, video game crossovers, and what The Hollywood Reporter refers to as “future brand extensions.” The new showrunner of The Walking Dead will be Angela Kang, who began working on the series in 2011. Kang has recently served as a writer on 21 episodes and producer on 54 episodes of the show.
Charlie Collier, the president of AMC, had the following to say to THR about Kang’s promotion:
“This is an enormously important day for the entire The Walking Dead television universe. We are proud to acknowledge Angela’s significant contribution to the series and to set a clear path forward for a ninth season under her direction. Further, with gratitude and admiration, we also recognize Scott’s broad impact on, and leadership of, the content that fuels our TWD universe. Together, we will dream bigger and more broadly than ever before. I know I speak for Angela, Scott and everyone at AMC when I say thanks most of all to the fans and the many talented people who have helped AMC play Dead.”
Kang’s promotion comes at a time where the series is seeing its lowest viewership ratings in five years. It makes sense for the network to shake things up at this time, and Kang’s history with the franchise makes her a safe and familiar choice for moving forward. The fact that Gimple will be overseeing even more elements of the franchise means AMC was happy with his performance as showrunner and sees room for more growth of the franchise. Only time will tell how these changes play out, and just how many more “brand extensions” come to fruition.
The Walking Dead Season Nine will premiere in late 2018. Stay tuned to Horror News Network for more details on the show under Angela Kang’s leadership as soon as they break!