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The Walking Dead Season 12 - Will It Ever Happen?

It's safe to assume that the franchise's fanbase was legitimately stunned when it was announced that Season 11 of "The Walking Dead" would be its last. And we've come to learn many folks directly involved in the production were blindsided by the news as well, with longtime star Jeffrey Dean Morgan freely admitting the fact to Collider during a 2021 interview. "It came from nowhere," Morgan said, later noting the unexpected cancellation dramatically altered the narrative of Season 11. "I think they had Season 11 all mapped out," he said of showrunner Angela Kang and "The Walking Dead" creative team, adding, "So it was a massive pivot."

It seems the end of "The Walking Dead" was very much final from the moment AMC bosses brought the hammer down, however, with Morgan going on to tell Collider in no uncertain terms, "There's not a Season 12." AMC bosses thankfully bumped up the episode count for the final season of "The Walking Dead" to give Kang and her crew enough time to make that pivot and close the story out strong. They managed that task and then some, bringing the blockbuster zombie saga to a satisfying and thrilling conclusion.

Of course, not all of the various storylines were closed out with finality. And even if a new season of the flagship "The Walking Dead" series is not part of the franchise's future, the saga is obviously far from over.

There are still plenty of stories being told in The Walking Dead universe

In fact, despite the flagship series now being off the air, "The Walking Dead" universe is arguably bigger than it's ever been. Expansion was apparently part of Scott Gimple's plan after the axe fell on the original series, with the franchise's chief content officer telling Digital Spy, "We have a lot of thrilling story left to tell ... This end will be a beginning of more 'Walking Dead.'" He'd go on to boast the franchise would soon be flush with new faces and places, as well as those already familiar to fans.

The franchise had already expanded by the time "The Walking Dead" ended, of course. But "Fear The Walking Dead" and "The Walking Dead: World Beyond" have recently wrapped their own runs too. Still, Gimple has kept his word on growing the "Walking Dead" world, with a wave of spin-offs already making their way to AMC, beginning with 2022's star-studded anthology series, "Tales of The Walking Dead." "The Walking Dead: Dead City" followed, tracking Maggie Rhee (Lauren Cohan) and Neegan Smith (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) to New York City in their search for the former's kidnapped son.

Most recently, "The Walking Dead: Daryl Dixon" made its debut, following the adventures of Norman Reedus' titular character across Europe. Both of the latter series have been well-received, and have already been renewed for second seasons. And Gimple is soon to debut his most intriguing "TWD" spin-off yet, returning beloved stars Andrew Lincoln (Rick Grimes) and Danai Gurira (Michonne) in 2024's "The Walking Dead: The Ones Who Live."