Danai Gurira to leave The Walking Dead after season 10

The Walking Dead has misplaced one other star.

Danai Gurira, who rocketed to fame after becoming a member of AMC’s zombie collection in season 3 because the steely badass Michonne, will probably be departing the present after the tenth season. Her appearances will probably be restricted to solely a few episodes, in accordance to The Hollywood Reporter.

Originally launched as a brooding warrior with a darkish previous distrustful of Rick Grimes’ band of survivors, the character of Michonne solely grew in complexity in later seasons. After forming a bond with Rick’s son Carl, she finally turned a romantic curiosity for Rick himself; because the character’s recognition grew, Gurira’s inventory as an actress exploded. She channeled a little bit of Michonne’s badass vibe for her standout function as Dora Milaje basic Okoye in last year’s smash hit Black Panther, a function she reprised in Avengers: Infinity War; she’s anticipated to accomplish that once more the upcoming Avengers: Endgame, and she or he’s additionally in talks to seem in 2020’s Godzilla vs. Kong and the as-yet untitled Star Trek 4.

As if all of those big-budget productions flattening her door weren’t sufficient of a demand on her time, Gurira can also be persevering with to construct her profession as a playwright. She received a Whiting Award for her 2012 play The Convert, which not too long ago loved a prolonged run in London with Black Panther co-star Letitia Wright starring; she additionally garnered a Tony nomination in 2016 for Eclipsed, which starred Lupita Nyong’O (these ladies of Black Panther actually appear to get pleasure from working collectively). In addition to her stage work, she’s additionally at the moment creating a miniseries based mostly on Nigerian creator Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s novel Americanah, which she is going to produce together with Nyong’O, who is ready to star.

With all of this occurring, it is not precisely a shock that Gurira would have little time left for The Walking Dead, however the information of her departure constitutes a vital blow to the long-running collection. It comes simply months after the present aired its closing episode that includes Andrew Lincoln’s Rick Grimes, and longtime stars Lauren Cohan (Maggie), Xander Berkeley (Gregory), and Tom Payne (Jesus) have additionally not too long ago exited.

There stays the robust risk, nonetheless, that Michonne might make a return for a number of of the three planned spin-off films starring Lincoln which AMC at the moment has within the works. Speaking to THR last November, AMC’s president of authentic programming David Madden acknowledged Gurira’s contribution to The Walking Dead‘s continued success. “She has been very vocal about saying that she loves the show. We love Danai; we love that character,” he stated. “Right now, she’s got a lot of opportunities and she needs to weigh what she feels is best for her. But we certainly would want her on the show as long as she wants to be on it… She is an incredibly valuable character and I’m really hoping she stays… The goal is to have Danai continue on whatever basis she can make work, given the other things that she has going on in her life.” With regards to the primary Rick-centric spin-off film, Madden had this to say: “I can’t really say to you what will exactly happen in the movie, but… let me put it this way: I have high hopes that Rick and Michonne’s paths will cross again. I’ll just say that.”

Gurira’s presence would definitely serve to bolster followers’ curiosity within the spin-offs, the primary of which is at the moment in manufacturing. Her departure from the primary collection will primarily lead to Carol (Melissa McBride) being promoted to lead character standing, a lot as Lincoln’s exit did for fan favourite Daryl (Norman Reedus). Both McBride and Reedus not too long ago signed multiple-year franchise offers with AMC, indicating that the pair will probably be holding down The Walking Dead by the tenth season and maybe past; their offers additionally embody the opportunity of their characters being ported over to a spin-off collection or movie.

All instructed, it is one other unhappy day for TWD followers, with Michonne’s probably reappearance sooner or later down the highway providing a little bit of a silver lining. The collection’ scores have been steadily falling for fairly a while now, and regardless of how superior Daryl and Carol are (and they’re), a rebound appears unbelievable as long as the mass exodus of standard characters continues. On the plus facet, the restricted runtime of the spin-off options might introduce a much-needed leaner, meaner narrative type to the world of The Walking Dead, probably reigniting the curiosity of followers fed up with the collection’ tendency to meander; throw in a Rick and Michonne reunion, and AMC simply would possibly get a good portion of the present’s severely depleted, once-formidable fan base back on board. We’ll be right here to report any and all particulars on the spin-offs as they change into accessible.

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