'The Walking Dead' Season 8: Khary Payton Shares On-Set Picture, Plus Speculation Begins On Who Could Die Next

The Season 8 premiere of AMC's The Walking Dead not only coincides with the show's 100th episode, but also continues the all-out war between Rick and Negan's independent groups. So, for fans that were worried Season 7 showed a decline in the central storyline, have no fear, the pace is about to get frenetic.

SPOILER ALERT: This article discusses Season 8 of AMC's The Walking Dead as well as the comic books that the television series is based on. Please proceed with caution if you wish to avoid spoilers from either medium.

Now that a writers' strike has been averted, fans of The Walking Dead can look forward to more news about Season 8 of AMC's The Walking Dead, as production begins on the upcoming season.

The Season 8 premiere of The Walking Dead will also be the show's 100th episode. So fans can look forward to an amped-up episode, according to The Walking Dead showrunner, Scott Gimple.

"By virtue of the fact that the narrative has turned into one of pretty intense conflict. It's'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 recently told Entertainment Weekly.

As Andrew Lincoln, who plays main character, Rick Grimes, explained to Comic Book recently, he likes to think Gimple planned the all-out war to coincide with the 100th episode of The Walking Dead.

"It's a huge achievement and I know I'm sure, Scott Gimple, four years ago, had it planned that we would be starting a full-scale war on the hundredth episode. I like to think he's that much of a boy scout: always prepared."
AMC's 'The Walking Dead,' Season 8, Rick Grimes and Michonne, image from Season 7
[Image by Gene Page/AMC]

While Lincoln may be looking forward to Season 8 of The Walking Dead, some suggest his character, Rick, could lose someone very dear to him in Season 8. As the Express points out, in the comic books, Rick is involved with Andrea. At roughly the same point of time as the TV series is now approaching, Andrea is bitten by a walker and dies before being reanimated as a walker. While, in the TV series, Andrea (played by Laurie Holden) is long gone, Rick is currently involved with Michonne (Danai Gurira). So, could Michonne die in Season 8 of The Walking Dead?

Filming Is Now Underway For Season 8 Of The Walking Dead

While the threat of a writers' strike may have loomed as production was ready to begin on Season 8 of The Walking Dead, it appears things have settled down and filming is now underway. Already, fan site The Spoiling Dead are releasing fan-caught images of the cast and crew on location in Georgia. One set of images show Carl Grimes (Chandler Riggs) carrying a gas can. Some fans likened the image to one of Rick's earlier images from Season 1 of The Walking Dead where he is also shown carrying a gas canister and wearing the same hat Carl now wears.

Along with these images, Khary Payton, who plays Ezekiel, the leader of the group the Kingdom, has released his own image from on-set of Season 8 of The Walking Dead. The image only shows him in shadow, with the caption, "& we start once more for the fallen..." This statement is likely a reference to those who died in Season 7 of The Walking Dead as the show heads forward into an all-out war with Negan's (Jeffrey Dean Morgan) group, the Saviors.

As Rick's group joins with the likes of the Kingdom and Hilltop, new characters are likely to turn up in Season 8 of The Walking Dead. Already, we know who two of these new characters will be thanks to an announcement made by TVLine recently.
"Ahead of Season 8's Saviors/Scavengers-vs.-Alexandria/Hilltop/Kingdom war, AMC's monster smash is casting two new recurring good guys: Dillon, a sexy, blue-collar twentysomething whose survival skills include sarcasm, and Abbud, an innately likable Muslim American whose nerves are, let's say, jangled, because he's flown solo for too long in zombieland. Of the pair, the former is likelier to survive the looming conflict — not only does Dillon sound like a less jerky Spencer, but the casting notice for the roles hints that the actor chosen might get picked up for subsequent seasons."
Are you looking forward to Season 8 of AMC's The Walking Dead? Let us know your thoughts by commenting below.

The Walking Dead will return to AMC for Season 8 in the fall of 2017.

[Featured Image by Gene Page/AMC]