Oh, look, one of the most-watched scripted television shows of the last few years was renewed. The Walking Dead Season 8 will definitely happen on AMC, which is kind of like saying the sun will rise in the east tomorrow morning. AMC confirmed The Walking Dead Season 8 the week before season 7 even hit the airwaves.

“Eeny, meeny, miny, more,” said Charlie Collier, president of AMC, SundanceTV and AMC Studios in a statement released by AMC when The Walking Dead Season 8 renewal was first announced. “What a joy to partner with Robert Kirkman, Scott M. Gimple and some of the hardest-working people in television to bring The Walking Dead to the fans. And, most important, thanks to those fans for breathing life into this remarkable series right along with us.”

Here’s everything we know about the new season of The Walking Dead:

The Walking Dead Season 8 Trailer

The first trailer for The Walking Dead season 8 is here! Check it out below:

The Walking Dead Season 8 Release Date

The Walking Dead season 8 will premiere on October 22, 2017 on AMC.

Read and download the full Den of Geek Special Edition magazine here!

Don’t forget to listen to Den of Geek’s Walking Dead podcast, No Room in Hell!

 

The Walking Dead Season 8 Cast

Negan will return for more evil shenanigans in The Walking Dead season 8. Speaking on The Howard Stern Show (via ComicBook.com), actor Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who’s had the tough task of bringing the infamous villain from the comics to our TV screens, confirmed his return, saying, “I know I will be on board for Season 8.”

This news shouldn’t come as a surprise at all for those who have been keeping up with Robert Kirkman’s comics, in which Negan is still alive and well more than fifty issues after his initial appearance. If showrunner Scott Gimple’s plan is to continue being faithful to the books, then there’s still a lot of ground to cover in terms of Negan.

THR reports that Steven Ogg (Simon), Katelyn Nacon (Enid) and Pollyanna McIntosh (Jadis) have been promoted to series regulars for The Walking Dead season 8. This should come as no surprise, as their roles seemed to grow throughout season 7. It will especially be great to see much more of Simon, Negan’s smiling henchman, and Jadis, the enigmatic leader of the garbage people.

In other news, TV Line reports that two new characters are coming to The Walking Dead season 8. The first is a character named Dillon, who is described by TV Line as “a sexy, blue-collar twentysomething whose survival skills include sarcasm.” The other is Abbud, a Muslim American who’s spend a lot of time alone since the outbreak. TV Line says Abbud’s “nerves are jangled.” The outlet also reveals that Dillon might be around for a while, based on the casting calll, which hints that the character might get picked up for multiple seasons.

No details on who’s been cast in the roles, but we’ll keep you updated as we learn more.

The Walking Dead Season 8 Story

Here’s a quick update on The Walking Dead season 8. It sounds a lot like showrunner Scott M. Gimple has been taking on board some of the criticisms of season 7. Namely, Gimple seems to be reacting to the common complaint that season 7 was a slow, stagnating affair, where all the cool characters stayed in separate locations for far too long.

Gimple said this to Entertainment Weekly

“By virtue of the fact that the narrative has turned into one of pretty intense conflict, […] it’s going to affect the structure in ways that make it a bit more kinetic, a bit more breakneck — shifting away from entire stories in one episode, and sort of fractured over several episodes, with little pieces of each story coming together.”

He also promised that “things are going to move, and possibly not have the kind of deep dives into characters in single episodes, but rather laying out the pieces as we go on.”

Sounds good to us! And if you’re reading, Mr. Gimple, could we please have some more tiger action? Weekly maulings for characters we don’t like, perhaps? That would be nice.

Comicbook.com reports that Walking Dead veteran Greg Nicotero will be back to direct the season 8 premiere, which will coincidentally be the 100th episode of the show. This should come as absolutely no surprise to fans of the show. Nicotero has directed 20 episodes of the show, including the last few premieres, midseason finales, midseason premieres, and season finales. He’s the go-to guy for the big episodes and that’ll undoubtedly continue for as long as Nicotero is involved with the show.

The Walking Dead Season 8 Photos

We have a bit of official art from San Diego Comic-Con that confirms the news. Check it out below:

EW dropped the first photo from The Walking Dead season 8. The image features Daryl and Carol having a little bit of a reunion. Not much to decipher from the picture, unfortunately. Check it out below: