11:02am PT by Lesley Goldberg
AMC Renews 'The Walking Dead' for Season 3
AMC's zombie drama The Walking Dead has a lot of life in it.
Hot on the heels of its record-breaking second season premiere, AMC has renewed the series for a third season.
Last week's 90-minute Season 2 premiere shattered basic-cable ratings in a pair of key demographics, drawing 4.8 million viewers in the advertiser-coveted 18-49 metric as well as 4.2 million adults 25-54 en route to collecting 7.3 million total viewers.
"Today we are pleased to announce that the ‘dead’ shall live as we proudly renew The Walking Dead for a third season on AMC and, globally, with our terrific partners at Fox International Channels," AMC president Charlie Collier said Tuesday. “We are thankful for everyone’s contribution in front of and behind the camera as we continue to make The Walking Dead a unique television experience. And, we are so proud as it continues to set viewership records around the world.”
Adapted from Robert Kirkman's long-running comic book series by former showrunner Frank Darabont, Walking Dead stars Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes, the leader of a rag-tag group of survivors of an unexplained zombie apocalypse. Glen Mazzara serves as showrunner, with Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd, David Alpert and Darabont serving as executive producers. Emmy-winning special effects artist Greg Nicotero co-produces.
The series' premiere on Halloween 2010 delivered 5.3 million viewers and a 2.7 rating in adults 18-49. The six-episode first season averaged 3.5 million in the demo and averaging 5.2 million total viewers.
The 13-episode second season is being split in two, taking a break for the holidays after six installments and returning Feb. 12.
The series has also spawned a post-show recap series, Talking Dead, hosted by Nerdist's Chris Hardwick, as well as a board game and line of action figures.
Fox International Channels premiered Walking Dead this weekends across networks in Europe, Asia, Latin America, Africa and the Middle East where ratings broke pay TV ratings records worldwide. More than 10 million viewers in 122 countries tuned in to watch the Season 2 premiere.