Andrew Lincoln Might Direct The Walking Dead Season 10

Rick might not be coming back, but Andrew Lincoln is not quite done with The Walking Dead. Earlier this year it was confirmed that the upcoming ninth season of the hit show would be Lincoln’s last. His decision to leave the series was ultimately due to his wife and two kids who live in London.“I have two young children, and I live in a different country, and they become less portable as they get older,” said Lincoln in an interview with EW. “It was that simple. It was time for me to come home.”

However, Lincoln isn’t leaving The Walking Dead for good. Lincoln announced that he will be returning to the set of season 9 in order to learn how to direct in hopes of helming an episode of season 10. This wouldn’t be the first time an actor directed an episode of the show. Michael Culditz, Abraham in the show, directed the upcoming season’s seventh episode after also shadowing a director on set.

Related: The Walking Dead Season 9 Teaser Promises New Beginnings

“I’m going back,” Lincoln told EW “I’m going back to shadow a director, and my intention is to direct next year. I can’t be that far away because I can’t bear it. That’s how much I am invested in the show and the continuation of the story.”

Rick is one of the few remaining original characters on the show and season 9 is set to be quite the emotional departure for Lincoln. Naturally, AMC and the producers have been tight lipped on how Rick will leave but if the past is any indication, it won’t be a happy and bright affair. Who will rise up to lead once Rick is gone?

Season 9 of The Walking Dead is in the final stages of filming and is set to premiere on October 7.