This comes as less news than confirmation of what everyone already knew — in our recent interview with cast member Laurie Holden, for instance, the actress described Gimple as “the new showrunner,” noting he “has been a writer with us from very early on. He’s an incredible creative, and I think we’re about to enter a renaissance.”
Gimple, who’ll take over the show for its fourth season, set to begin production on May 6th, is the zombie drama’s third showrunner. Frank Darabont, who originally developed the series, either stepped down or was fired after the first season, depending on whose accounts you believe. Mazzara took over for the second season and has also shepherded the show through its current third, though he announced his plans to depart it back in December. The official reason cited was “that there is a difference of opinion about where the show should go moving forward,” while other reports had him leaving because of AMC’s siding with Robert Kirkman, the creator of the graphic novel on which “The Walking Dead” is based, about the future of the series.
Gimple, who’s been on the show’s writing staff since season two, has been bumped up to executive producer, as has special effects and makeup supervisor Greg Nicotero and producer Tom Luse. Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd and David Alpert will continue to serve as EPs as well. Previous to “The Walking Dead,” Gimple was a writer on “Life,” “Drive” and “FlashForward.”
“Scott has been an essential part of this show since he came aboard at the very beginning of season two. He’s contributed to guiding this show in a substantial way that has resulted in a lot of the key scenes and storylines fans have dubbed signature moments of ‘The Walking Dead,’” said Kirkman. “I am thrilled to begin work on a brand new season of ‘The Walking Dead’ with Scott at the helm, and I truly believe we could be embarking on what will be the best season of this show yet.”
The fourth season of “The Walking Dead” will premiere in October with 16 episodes.