‘The Walking Dead’ season 8
Andrew Lincoln plays Rick Grimes on ‘The Walking Dead’ season 8. AMC/The Walking Dead

Andrew Lincoln’s (Rick Grimes) exit in “The Walking Dead” season 9 is confirmed, but his character may not die on the show. The actor isn’t allowed to reveal too many details about what happens on the show, but in a recent interview he appears to hint at Rick leaving, with the possibility of his return some time in the future.

"My relationship with this part is far from over," Lincoln said in an interview with ComicBook.com. The actor didn’t elaborate on the comment, and simply asked the fans to watch the next season to find out.

The TV series has already tried this with Morgan Jones (Lennie James), a character who got so sick of all the fighting and death that he just picked up his stick and walked away. The character ended up in the “Fear the Walking Dead” spin-off series, but it may different for Rick.

The reason why Lincoln is leaving the TV series is that he has spent nearly a decade playing this role, and wants to spend time with his family. So, the actor may not be heading to the spin-off next year. However, if his character is still alive and out there somewhere; he will come back some time in the future.

The show also has a core fan base, and Lincoln said that he felt sad about leaving only after interacting with the fans at a panel discussion. After finishing the filming, the actor felt proud of what he and the others in the team have accomplished. The actor especially likes the episode in which his character exits, which he described as a “launching pad” for where the story goes.

Fellow cast member Danai Gurira (Michonne) praised Lincoln in an online post, while bidding him adieu from the show. The actress and the others appear to be very emotional after the panel discussion at the San Diego Comic Con [see below].

Credit: Danai Gurira/ Twitter