Richonne Forever! Danai Gurira — who returns to the big screen as General Okoye of the Dora Milaje in Marvel Studios’ Black Panther: Wakanda Forever — isn’t just back as Michonne in the Walking Dead Universe. The star, who is executive producing the Rick and Michonne spin-off series on AMC, will also serve as co-creator and will write for the new series alongside showrunner Scott M. Gimple. Originally developed as a theatrical Walking Dead movie trilogy, the reworked series reunites Gurira with her longtime Walking Dead co-star Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes. The still-untitled series starts shooting early next year and will begin airing in 2023 on AMC and AMC+.
In a profile for SELF, Gurira revealed she is a co-creator of the Rick & Michonne series with showrunner and executive producer Gimple, chief creative officer of AMC’s Walking Dead Universe. Gurira is “in high gear” working on the Walking Dead spin-off, an “epic love story tale” that she calls a “prestige miniseries.”
“She challenges me, I challenge her, and neither one of us lets the other off the hook,” Gimple told SELF. “In life, I’m more a character actor; Danai is a lead. When we’re working, when we’re pitching, when we’re just dealing with life stuff—it’s a good combo.” Gimple added of the “incredibly creatively ambitious” Gurira: “[Danai] wants to do new, signature work—stuff that isn’t out there currently. She doesn’t want to settle in any way. It’s the best creative energy to be around.”
Gurira is an award-winning playwright and was developing Americanah, an adaptation of Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie’s best-selling novel of the same name, with her Black Panther co-star Lupita Nyong’o. Gurira wrote the Americanah pilot and was to showrun the 10-episode limited series given a straight-to-series order at streamer HBO Max, but that prestige project did not move forward when pandemic delays forced star and executive producer Nyong’o to bow out in 2020.
AMC previously confirmed Gurira and Lincoln would be creatively involved with the still-untitled Rick & Michonne show as executive producers. After announcing the series at San Diego Comic-Con, AMC Networks said in a release that Gurira and Lincoln “have been actively involved in conceiving the creative and the continuation of their characters’ story.”
Also in the works at AMC are the Daryl Dixon spin-off focused on Norman Reedus’ character and TWD: Dead City, which follows Lauren Cohan’s Maggie and Jeffrey Dean Morgan’s Negan into post-apocalyptic New York City. All three Walking Dead shows are slated to premiere in 2023 on AMC and AMC+.
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