You might be gearing up to bid farewell to Andrew Lincoln in front of the camera on The Walking Dead. But Rick Grimes exiting the show doesn’t mean that Andrew Lincoln himself is done with those rascally zombies.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Lincoln confirmed that he is planning to return to The Walking Dead’s current filming for season nine in Senoia, Georgia. However, he won’t be donning the greying facial hair of everyone’s favorite post-apocalyptic former sheriff—he’ll be shadowing directors so he can head behind the camera for the show’s 10th season:
I’m going back. I’m going back to shadow a director, and my intention is to direct next year.
This isn’t a new venture for Lincoln, either—before Walking Dead ever took off, he directed several episodes of his previous “best known for” show, the Channel 4 sitcom Teachers, in which he also starred.
It’s not the Rick Grimes return you might have wanted, unless you want to put on your tinfoil hats and presume this is all an elaborate plan to have Rick return in secret. But it’s still good to hear that Lincoln is not completely done with the franchise at large after all these years.
The Walking Dead shuffles back onto TV screens October 7.