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The creative team behind the reboot of the Chuck Norris series starring Jared Padalecki is developing a prequel series, Walker: Independence, for the younger-skewing broadcaster.
Independence is set in the 1800s and follows Abby Walker, who begins a quest for revenge after her husband is murdered before her eyes while the couple is heading out West. Along the way, she crosses paths with Hoyt Rawlings, a rogue in search of purpose. Their journey takes them to Independence, Texas, as they form a newfound family that struggles with the world around them.
It’s not clear how the potential prequel series will connect with Walker, which is currently in its second season on The CW, where it ranks as the network’s most watched scripted original. Padalecki stars in Walker as Cordell Walker, the eldest son of Abeline Walker (Molly Hagan). Keegan Allen plays Liam Walker, while Matt Barr portrays Cordell’s best friend, Hoyt Rawlins.
Walker: Independence is written by Seamus Fahey and Walker showrunner Anna Fricke. Padalecki will exec produce, as he does with the flagship series. Dan Lin, Lindsey Liberatore and Laura Terry exec produce the prequel, which is also from CBS Studios.
Walker is seemingly taking a page from Paramount Network’s Yellowstone. The Kevin Costner Western from Taylor Sheridan is a ratings hit on cable and will launch a prequel this month with 1883 on streamer Paramount+.
The CW is no stranger to franchising its originals. Just as Arrow kicked off a network-defining universe of DC Comics shows, the Mark Pedowitz-led broadcaster is also trying to revisit the world of Supernatural with a prequel, The Winchesters, in development from star Jensen Ackles and Danneel Ackles, which Padalecki is not involved in. The Supernatural prequel, which marks The CW’s third attempt at a spinoff, hails from Warner Bros. Television.
Meanwhile, The CW has turned All American into a franchise with spinoff Homecoming, and Nancy Drew is getting a sibling series in Tom Swift.
Deadline was first to report Independence.
Dec. 9, 9:36 a.m. Updated to reflect that Padalecki is not involved with The Winchesters.
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