“The Walking Dead” may lose its biggest star.
Collider reports Lincoln will appear in six episodes of the ninth season when it returns to AMC this fall before exiting the zombie drama.
Lincoln has played the main leader of the group of survivors, Rick Grimes, since the show premiered in 2010.
If Lincoln bids adieu, the baton will likely carry over to his co-star Norman Reedus, who plays Rick’s close ally and brother-in-arms, Daryl Dixon. That shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. The 49-year-old actor has previously said he wants to stay on the show until it ends.
Still, even with the beloved character potentially taking over the show, many fans believe if Lincoln is exiting the series it may be time to call it quits.
As some fans noted, it also probably wouldn’t be great for the show’s ratings which have been taking a nosedive during its latest season. The season eight finale saw the show’s lowest ratings since season one.
Lincoln may not be the only big “Walking Dead” star to exit the series on season nine.
Lauren Cohan, who has played Maggie Greene since season two of “The Walking Dead,” is set to star on a new hour-long ABC series, “Whiskey Cavalier.” The show, about an FBI agent (Scott Foley) tasked to work with a CIA operative (Cohan), will premiere early next year on the network.
Cohan was the last actor to sign on for the show’s ninth season. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Cohan and her agents were “not happy with the offers” from AMC. So far, she will appear in six of the season’s first eight episodes.
Chandler Riggs, who played Lincoln’s onscreen son, Carl, was surprisingly killed off the series on the series’ season eight mid-season premiere. The decision upset many fans who believed he was the future of the show. Even Reedus said he wasn’t happy with Carl’s death.
With multiple stars potentially on the way out of AMC’s largest show, it may be time to wind down the zombie drama. The show began with Rick Grimes waking up from a coma to find the world forever changed and overrun by the undead. It only seems fitting the show would end with him as well.
AMC declined to comment.