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2020 is going to be a massive year in The Walking Dead universe.
The original series celebrates its 10th birthday in October – a whole decade of nail-biting thrills and zombie-fighting action.
The original spin-off, Fear the Walking Dead, returns for a sixth epic series with the fate of show original Morgan Jones (Lennie James) hanging in the balance.
And perhaps most excitingly of all, we get a second spinoff series - The Walking Dead: World Beyond.
Head of the Walking Dead universe Scott Gimple and writer Matt Negrete have created this latest series, which focuses on a younger cast of survivors, to “tell stories unlike we’ve seen before, taking our first step into an even larger world”.
Here's everything you need to know about The Walking Dead: World Beyond...
When does The Walking Dead: World Beyond start?
Fans in the US can watch The Walking Dead: World Beyond from Sunday, October 4 on AMC.
AMC President Sarah Barnett confirmed earlier this year that World Beyond would be a “closed-ended” series, which means it won’t run indefinitely like the original series and Fear the Walking Dead.
Instead, The Walking Dead: World Beyond will have just two seasons of 10 episodes.
Can I watch The Walking Dead: World Beyond in the UK?
The exclusive home of Walking Dead: World Beyond in the UK is Amazon Prime Video.
New episodes are released every Friday following its October 2 launch, so the 10th and final episode will be available to watch on Prime Video on Friday, December 2.
Prime Video has the majority of the Walking Dead back catalogue available to stream including season 1-8 of The Walking Dead and season 1-4 of Fear the Walking Dead.
It’s the number-one destination for zombie binge.
This is the third Walking Dead series – how is World Beyond different?
Announcing the series at San Diego Comic Con 2019, Gimple revealed a “big secret” about the Walking Dead universe.
“All these years we've just seen a tiny sliver of the Walking Dead world. There's a whole lot of world out there,” he said.
“The big secret is that all along, there have been other civilisations that survived the apocalypse. We saw hints of that in season seven of The Walking Dead and again in [Fear the Walking Dead's] 'The End of Everything,' and now we're about to show a lot more of the world in a bunch of different projects."
Early descriptions of the characters and plot suggest the new series will have a similar feel to Young Adult fiction.
"With its focus on the next generation of survivors led by two young female protagonists, we think this third series is a perfect gateway to advance the narrative of this universe in ways that are multi-generational, fresh and unexpected,” said AMC.
Talking about the young protagonists, the US broadcaster said: "Some will become heroes. Some will become villains.
“In the end, all of them will be changed forever. Grown-up and cemented in their identities, both good and bad.”
Gimple added: “These kids can grow up in a place of comfort and security, but they leave everything on a dangerous quest, and are being pursued by adults on their own,"
Annet Mahendru, who plays the character Huck in the new series, revealed more information in an interview with MEA World Wide, where she described the series as a “generation apocalypse show”.
“It's about the kids that grew up not knowing the real world around them,” she said.
"These kids want to go out and see what is left of the world. They have been very sheltered. The kids will venture out into the world together and they will see what is left and the work that has to be done."
Expaining how the dynamic will be different to other Walking Dead series, she added: "This whole show is like seeing and experiencing something for the first time. Like your first love, your first heartbreak... so everything is basically shot from that lens.
"Their first big fight is a huge deal. We get to a centre called the blaze of glory and everything is on fire and it draws all the empties, it's like World War III. So that was very exciting to shoot and something the fans have never seen before…"
Who's in The Walking Dead: World Beyond cast?
Huck – Played by Annet Mahendru (Tyrant, The Americans)
Huck used to be a Marine and was in the sniper unit and now she is a campus security guard. She is highly trained and doesn't take life too seriously and she really wants to bring the world back to what it was at any cost.
Iris – Played by Aliyah Royale (The Red Line)
The second lead protagonist in the series, Iris is the adoptive sister of Hope and daughter of Leo Bennett, one of the leaders in the community.
Hope - Played by Alexa Mansour (Unfriended: The Dark Web)
A good-natured rule breaker who lives for today, Hope is likeable and funny on the outside, but sad on the inside.
Elton – Played by Nicolas Cantu (The Amazing World of Gumball)
Small for his age in addition to being friendly and an old soul, Elton also has a black belt in karate.
Silas – Played by Hal Cumpston
Big for his age, Silas is a shy loner who scares some kids - something that he hates.
Felix – Played by Nico Tortorella (Scream 4, The Following)
An honourable man of his word who isn't afraid to fight for others' safety and acceptance.
Leo Bennett – Played by Joe Holt (The Punisher)
A solid family man and respected professor, Leo has a generous heart and unwavering optimism for the future.
Elizabeth – Played by Julia Ormond (Temple Grandin, First Knight)
A charismatic leader of a large, sophisticated and formidable force.
Talking to AMC.com about her character, Ormond compared her role with the leaders of the other Walking Dead series.
“It’s an extension of the other worlds we’ve seen, but she’s another kind of community leader," she said.
"I went into an actor panic because there have been so many great leadership roles. [Laughs] Andrew Lincoln, Lennie James... just such strong characters that have lent different sides of what my responsibility is. I think she’s more in the pragmatic zone.
"For me, the pragmatism that some of the characters have is really about devoting yourself to the future of the human race – not even the planet. The planet is going to survive, but it’s the human race that’s at risk. What role do you take? What tactics do you sign up for? At some point, the buck has to stop somewhere.
"What I love about World Beyond is that it starts with a younger group and people who were really young when this all started. For them, it’s like ‘OK, boomers. You guys messed up. It’s up to us to save the world’. It’s definitely got that vibe.”
Guest stars in the first season will also include Natalie Gold (Succession, The Land of Steady Habits) as Lyla, a mysterious figure operating in the shadows on behalf of the cause she believes in; Al Calderon (Step Up: High Water) as Barca; Scott Adsit (Veep, 30 Rock) as Tony; and Ted Sutherland (Fear Street, Rise) as Percy.
Check out The Walking Dead: World Beyond trailer
Where is the new Walking Dead series set?
The series begins in the Midwest, but the characters' adventures will take them far beyond their original location.
Will the show cross over with The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead?
When Fear the Walking Dead started, the different timelines and locations meant that many presumed the series couldn’t overlap with the original show. However, eventually Lennie James’ character Morgan jumped from The Walking Dead to Fear and the two series are now quite closely aligned.
Scott Gimple said that it was inevitable the new series would overlap with the first two series as well, teasing that the overarching ‘three circle’ mystery that has appeared in both shows with also be part of the new series.
“The place [these characters] come from is associated with one of those circles,” Gimple explained.
New episodes of The Walking Dead: World Beyond are released every Friday on Amazon Prime Video.
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