The future of The Walking Dead could be looking up.
The controversial axing of Chandler Riggs' character Carl may have upset a lot of fans, but season nine will see Angela Kang replacing Scott Gimple as showrunner – as well as the likely return of two of the biggest stars.
Andrew Lincoln and Norman Reedus, who play Rick and Daryl respectively, are said to be renegotiating their deals, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
Reedus' return was probably never in doubt.
The actor recently gave an interview saying that he would love to stay on the show until the very end, explaining: "I love being on the show... There's part of me that really wants to bookend the show. I started the show and I want to end the show."
It's just as well, because Kang's promotion to showrunner could benefit Daryl as she was the writer who penned both 'Still' (season 4) and 'The Cell' (season 7), two rare episodes which were successful in giving him character development.
As for Lincoln, it is safe to assume that Rick will be on the show for as long as the leading actor wants to be around.
Although in the comics, Rick's death is something that Kirkman has teased will happen eventually (with Carl potentially taking over as lead), the TV show is unlikely to follow down that path with the death of Rick's son.
The Walking Dead is due to return for the second half of its eighth season on February 25 in the US on AMC and on Monday, February 26 on FOX UK.
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