AMC’s The Walking Dead returned to our screens earlier this month and the show – now in its fifth season – shattered ratings. This seems to have created an impetus to get cracking on with the planned spin-off series. It was confirmed on October 25th be Comingsoon.net that director Adam Davidson had singed on the direct the pilot episode of the new series. The companion series – which was first announced last year – will begin production next year and air on AMC.
Scheduled to begin filming in late 2014, Davidson has been the first person announced to be involved in the series. The synopsis for the new show states that the story will centre on a group of survivors after the walkers take over, however, it will not feature anyone from the original series and there will also be no character crossovers.
As far as TV is concerned Davidsons’ CV is a force to be reckoned with, working behind the camera on dramas such as Deadwood, Dexter, Lost and most recently True Blood. Davidson also won an Oscar back in 1991 for Best Live Action Short Film (The Lunch Date). It also doesn’t come as a revelation that he has a history with AMC, directing episodes of Turn: Washington’s Spies and Hell on Wheels as well as myriad other popular sitcoms.
Cinemablend reported back on September 28th, that the new show would be co-created by Robert Kirkman with Dave Erickson being tapped as show runner. The story arc will follow two different sets of families, including a father and a son as well as a mother with two kids. There will also feature a woman named Andrea, who will be fleeing on her own, escaping a bad marriage.
Churchman has hinted that the series is going for a change of scenery moving away from Georgia and other southern United States like in the original. Both shows are taking place in the same world, but at different points in time, hence the reason there will be no crossovers as the shows will not be happening contemporarily.
Spin-offs to successful shows is not always a winning formula with a few recent duds springing to mind such as Criminal Minds: Suspect behaviour, Stargate Universe and How I Met Your Dad (which didn’t even make it past the pilot episode). However, the massive fanbase and the popularity of The Walking Dead, it seems AMC are on to a winner even if the spin-off does seem a bit pointless. Time will tell.