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Exclu: Most Walking Dead fans know there’s only six episodes in this first season. I know, the season is half finished even though it feels like it’s just getting started.
But here’s what you didn’t know, or perhaps only feared: Sources say AMC isn’t likely to launch the 13-episode second season until next October.
The reason? Fearfest. AMC’s annual horror movie marathon served as a perfect promotional platform to ramp up interest for The Walking Dead, which also took advantage of the higher audience levels during the fall (something not all cable shows can pull off given the barrage of broadcast shows airing at the same time — which is why most cable dramas run during the summer).
Plus, AMC has already pushed Breaking Bad from March to the summer, and has Mad Men airing in the summer as usual, and at some point has to squeeze in the premiere of its new original series, The Killing. Combined with Walking Dead, that’s four shows to air next year, the most the network has ever had, and cable networks tend to spread out their premieres so they can properly promote each one.
Now, the October plan is not final, and there probably won’t be a firm premiere date for awhile — heck, the second season hasn’t even started production yet. But the current strategy is for another October roll out.
Some silver lining: Frank Darabont is expected to write and direct another episode next year.
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