When The Walking Dead returns in the Spring of 2021 for six episodes, they will be working from “six of the best scripts we’ve done,” Scott Gimple told The Insider earlier this week. Production on those episodes, in fact, has already begun. According to Deadline, they’ve done table readings and wardrobe fittings, and shooting is expected to begin in the next few days. Season 10 will shoot until Thanksgiving, and then in January, shooting will begin on the final 24 episodes of the series, which will air over 2021 and 2022.
Showrunner Angela Kang warns, however, that we should not expect the same size and scope that we are accustomed from in the season 10 bonus episodes. While The Walking Dead has its own studio and its own backlot, and while it has the ability to build and add locations onto that backlot, the series will still be operating this fall during a pandemic, so don’t expect to see hundreds of extras or huge crowds of zombies. Production, however, is set up well for the Coronavirus. Among other things, according to Kang, they have “UV light things to zap germs” and their own mobile lab, so they can process Coronavirus lab tests themselves.
As for the stories themselves? That’s what may be most exciting about the bonus episodes. They will be focused on only what appears to be six main characters: Daryl, Carol, Negan, Maggie, Gabriel, and Aaron. The episodes will build toward season 11, but without Eugene, Princess, Ezekiel or Yumiko in the episode, we know that it won’t take up with the Commonwealth just yet.
Instead, the episodes will focus on “the dynamics between Maggie and Negan, we’ll see a lot of story related to Daryl and Carol, and where people have been in the past.” The Maggie and Negan reunion is something that a lot of The Walking Dead fans have been waiting for since the last time we saw the two in the same episode, Maggie was trying to kill Negan, who murdered her husband. It’ll be interesting to see, since Maggie obviously isn’t aware of Negan’s redemption arc.
Meanwhile, the Carol and Daryl storyline may continue to build on their future spin-off, and the references to “where people have been in the past” is obviously a nod toward where Maggie has been the last two seasons. That should also mean that we finally find out what’s up with that Ninja guy, how Maggie continued to get mail in the apocalypse, and perhaps what happened to Georgie.
Moreover, the episodes will not be stand-alone or bottle episodes. There will be threads that tie together and set up the big final arc in Season 11, which is likely to kick off in the fall 2021. In the meantime, Season 10C will air in the Spring, while Fear the Walking Dead returns this weekend, along with the second episode of The World Beyond.
Source: Deadline, Insider