New series is expected to launch in October 2016
Four characters from The Walking Dead have been confirmed as regulars in Season Seven.
Jeffrey Dean Morgan, who appeared as Negan at the end of Season Six, is among the characters promoted as series regulars along with Tom Payne, who played Jesus and a was a new ally to Rick (Andrew Lincoln) in the last series, Xander Berkeley, leader of the Hilltop Colony and Austin Amelio, who portrays Dwight, a member of Negan’s Savior group who had a number of run-ins with Daryl (Norman Reedus) in the last series.
The four additions to the full-time cast bring The Walking Dead‘s roster to 20 series regulars, up two from Season Six and an all-time high for the drama, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The sixth season of the US show ended in April, with its seventh season expected to follow in October.
Last month, it was also reported that the next season of The Walking Dead will introduce two new main characters.
According to TV Line, the sixth episode of the upcoming season will “introduce two new characters who don’t sound to me like anyone in particular from the comic-book series”.
The report lists the characters’ names as Naomi and Jennie, describing Naomi as a “grandmotherly type who, having lost so many loved ones, is now willing to do whatever it takes not to have to bury any more”, continuing: “Maybe she’s being introduced to counsel Carol about the awful necessities of the post-apocalyptic world”.
Jennie, meanwhile, is referred to as a “sunny-side-up kinda teenage… who sounds a lot like Beth 2.0, ‘kind, with a world-weary toughness’.”
Many fans were left angered by season six’s cliffhanger ending , later launched an online petition asking TV network AMC to reveal which character was killed by villain Negan.
Reedus – who plays Daryl Dixon in the show – has said that the new episodes will make up for the frustration.
“Trust me,” he said. “I think probably the planet is going to explode. That’s my feeling. It’s so good. Every time we go on a promotional tour talking about what’s going to come, we all say ‘Oh my God, it’s amazing. I can’t wait for you to see it.’ But it continually surprises me how this show grows and is put together and the execution of it – no pun intended.”
He went on to add: “It blows my mind. It just continually reaches a new plateau every single time, and this is the highest plateau we’ve ever been. So just wait. It’s worth the wait, trust me.”