At the San Diego Comic-Con, Andrew Lincoln made it official in that Season 9 will be his last of The Walking Dead.
“There seems to be an elephant in the room,” Lincoln told the packed crowd in Hall H at Comic-Con. “This will be my last season playing the part of Rick Grimes.”
Andrew Lincoln has been with The Walking Dead since the start and is said to have wanted to spend time with his family who live in England, as the series films in Atlanta. It’s also been said Lincoln may want to take on movie roles.
Lincoln was pretty upset when he announced the news at the SDCC, as were many fans.
“I don’t want this to become an Oscar acceptance speech or a obituary… I promise not to cry… I love this show. It means everything to me. I love the people who make this show,” he said. “I’m particularly fond of the people who watch this show. I’m really, really excited about this season. No one is bigger than the story, and the story this year is unbelievable.”
Interestingly enough, Andrew Lincoln did remark that his “relationship with Rick Grimes is far from over,” but it’s unclear what he meant (possibly meaning the rest of the upcoming season).
“These guys have been the best surrogate family I could have hoped for,” he said. “But I do have a real family and it is time for me to go home, but Norman [Reedus, aka Daryl] and Danai [Gurira, Michonne] send me scripts so I can keep one eye on the series. It’s been everything to me for 10 years. I believe in the story so much that I can’t spoil it for you. This is a really terrific season.”
Check out The Walking Dead Season 9 Comic-Con trailer as the series returns in October: