Melissa McBride Just Exited The Daryl And Carol Walking Dead Spin-Off

"The Walking Dead" is known for surprising exits. Yes, the long-running AMC drama is based on the equally long-running Image Comics series of the same name by Robert Kirkman, Tony Moore, and Charlie Adlard, so many fans could anticipate what was going to happen in the acclaimed live-action series. But it doesn't make it any less shocking when characters like Glenn Rhee, Beth Greene, and Carl Grimes exit the show in an emotional manner. Even when characters like Rick Grimes and Michonne make it out with their lives intact, it was still pretty shocking to see them leave after all that time fighting to survive both zombies and other survivors. And of course, there was all the drama behind the scenes involving the show's first showrunner Frank Darabont. 

However, the latest departure from the walker-infested hellscape might be the most surprising one yet. Some time after a spinoff starring fan-favorite characters Daryl Dixon and Carol Peletier was officially announced, it looks like star Melissa McBride has decided to step away from the project.

Just look at the flowers

Following the conclusion of the flagship series' 11th season, Norman Reedus and Melissa McBride were meant to go off on their own adventure as BFFs Daryl and Carol. When it was first announced in 2020, very few details were made available other than it would star the last remaining OG cast members as the badass duo and it would be created by franchise chief creative officer Scott M. Gimple and "The Walking Dead" showrunner Angela Kang. 

But thanks to a new report from TVLine, we learned that the production would move from Atlanta to Europe. And despite initial reports indicating that McBride's departure had something to do with the creative direction of the series, an AMC representative revealed that the actress parted ways with the production over the logistics of this relocation.

"Melissa McBride has given life to one of the most interesting, real, human and popular characters in "The Walking Dead" Universe. Unfortunately, she is no longer able to participate in the previously announced spinoff focused on the Daryl Dixon and Carol Peletier characters, which will be set and filmed in Europe this summer and premiere next year. Relocating to Europe became logistically untenable for Melissa at this time. We know fans will be disappointed by this news, but "The Walking Dead" Universe continues to grow and expand in interesting ways and we very much hope to see Carol again in the near future."

The "Walking Dead" sequel will still move on as planned alongside the other continuing adventures such as anthology series "Tales of the Walking Dead" and the Negan and Maggie-centric offshoot "Isle of the Dead" starring Lauren Cohan and Jeffrey Dean Morgan, but it will now only focus on Reedus' rugged motorcycle riding archer. Currently, there's no word on how these changes will affect the production schedule or the release date, but they still have some time to figure things out. "The Walking Dead" still has one more eight-episode arc to drop before the show hits its 11th and final season finale, which is expected to air on AMC at some point in the fall of 2022.