AMC announced the obvious today by locking in their ratings champ The Walking Dead for a fifth season, and ensuring the talent responsible for this season is in place for the next.
The Season 4 The Walking Dead premiere shattered cable records – again – with over 16 million viewers tuning in to see what would go down at the prison after the Woodbury residents assimilated into the population to conclude Season 3. Including DVR viewing up to three days past the premiere, over 20 million people watched the latest chapter in the zombie apocalypse.
“We are very happy to make what has to be one of the most anti-climactic renewal announcements ever,” AMC President Charlie Collier commented in the official announcement. “This is a show that has erased traditional distinctions between cable and broadcast. Its expanding base of passionate fans has grown every season, most recently – and most notably – with the season four premiere earlier this month, which broke viewership records for the series and became the biggest non-sports telecast in cable history. On behalf of the incredible team on both sides of the camera, thank you to the fans and here’s to more ‘Dead.'”
New showrunner Scott Gimple is set to return for Season 5 and if he lasts the entire season, he will have helmed the series longer than any previous showrunner has. Frank Darabont lasted a season and a half before he was ousted, and Glen Mazzara put in the same amount of time before he and the cable network parted ways. Gimple, who worked on the series since Season 1, took over showrunner duties to commence Season 4.
Joining Gimple as returning executive producers for Season 5 of The Walking Dead are Robert Kirkman, Gale Ann Hurd, David Alpert, Greg Nicotero and Tom Luse.
The next episode of The Walking Dead, the fourth of 16 that comprise Season 4, airs this upcoming Sunday at 9/8c on AMC.