The latest instalment in the so-called Walking Dead Universe – The Walking Dead: World Beyond – has begun. Taking place a decade after the zombie apocalypse began, the same year as The Walking Dead season 10, we know that the new series’ main characters are somehow involved with the mysterious organisation that we saw whisk Rick Grimes away in a helicopter during the main show.
“We’re not going to keep that hidden from the audience at all. We want the audience to catch up very quickly,” showrunner Matthew Negrete tells SFX in the new issue. “From then on, it’s about finding out more and more about this organisation. That’s what’s really exciting not just about season one, but in a two-season show finding out even more.”
Post-production on World Beyond season 1 has just finished and a second season has been commissioned. However, soon after the follow-up was announced, it was revealed that World Beyond would be a “limited series event” – meaning, at that time of the announcement, it was the only show in The Walking Dead Universe to have an end point (it has since been revealed that the main show will end with season 11).
“This was not meant to be an ongoing series,” Negrete says. “It was always meant to be a limited event series.”
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As well as giving us some more insight into the main show, World Beyond will introduce us to a group of teenagers who’ve grown up only knowing the world in its post-apocalyptic state.
“If we’re dealing with a show about characters growing up and wondering who they’re going to become, I like the idea of it starting off with them wondering, and then the audience having a really good idea of ‘they’ve made these choices, this is who they’re going to become,’” Negrete continues.
“Being able to write to that, being able to write to an ending, is a really great opportunity. That’s something that I’ve really been seizing on... my brain is mapping out season two currently. Being able to write a beginning knowing what your ending is is a really good thing, and it helps the storytelling in so many great ways.”
Read our full interview with Negrete, plus interviews with the rest of the World Beyond cast, in the new issue of SFX – available now. The Walking Dead: World Beyond is available now on Amazon Prime in the UK and AMC in the US.