This past Friday, a panel took place at North Hollywood’s TV Academy, where cast and crew members of AMC‘s The Walking Dead discussed the various goings-on of the second season as well as where the upcoming third season will take our harried survivors. No real spoilers ahead, unless you want to know absolutely nothing about the next season; details were more like character direction, confirmation of storylines, etc. Also around the same time as the panel, executive producer extraordinaire Gale Anne Hurd got some great news beyond the zombie front! She will be involved in even more shows that will be on television, and this is always wonderful to hear!
First the news on Hurd: Already a hugely successful TV producer through her production company Valhalla Entertainment, she will now start developing new series with Universal Cable Productions, which include the channels USA Network and SyFy. She’ll be in charge of production and development of a number of programs being described as “unknown.” What is also unknown is if this has anything to do with the projects Hurd is already working on, such as Port Royal (which will be for FX), her Area 51 show, and a show with Rosario Dawson. But Universal has a lot of faith in Hurd and Valhalla, as reflected in their statement:
Gale’s vision, expertise and superb taste make her and the Valhalla team a trifecta win for UCP. We are ecstatic that Valhalla is joining our studio and bolstering our efforts to expand our development — they share our creative commitment, passion for great stories and desire to produce efficiently. We’re confident that this is a collaboration that will be beneficial on multiple fronts.
In other words: “We are so ready to let Gale Anne Hurd kick serious TV ass for us.”
And in development concerning her other successful show, The Walking Dead, the panel revealed what would be happening as we follow Rick Grimes & Co. into the next phase of the zombie apocalypse. For example, where will they be going now that Hershel’s farm has been overtaken by zombies? We caught a hint at the very, very end of the season when we saw a glimpse of what can be assumed is Woodbury Prison. So, those familiar with the comics can expect those events to start unfolding.
Those who have been following the comics and noticing different events unfolding, like Hershel surviving and Daryl (who wasn’t originally in the comics) coming right to the forefront, can expect even more changes to the story they read. Hershel will continue his current role as “a badass with rifle” while Daryl will remain Rick’s “right-hand man” and gain more power among the survivors. As far as differences from the comics go, like the manner of Dale’s death, Robert Kirkman — creator of the comics — said to expect more of this in the future. He said that things that happen to certain characters in the comics might happen to different characters on the show. And we might see a good example of this in the first episode of the new season.
Also: Kirkman says he’s “testing the boundaries” at AMC, trying to insert even gorier, nastier zombie kills in than we’ve previously seen. (I think that’s real cheeky of him, and will not complain.) And showrunner Glen Mazzara has this to say about the third season, the premiere script for which he just completed:
“It’s pretty dynamic and action-packed with tons of zombies but also a lot of quieter moments and a lot of heart. This is a group of survivors, a family that has come together, and they have no good options, no place to go. And they’re really trying to keep themselves alive, and keep each other alive. You can see how desperate they are; they’re clinging to each other. It’s those moments of human interaction and heart that are important.”
Um, Glen? It was the quieter moments — the episodes and episodes and episodes of quieter moments — that made people a little impatient last year. But we’ll take your word for it. Besides: Michonne has arrived, and that’s exciting all by itself.
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