Is a piece of potential casting for a new TV pilot giving away a big spoiler for The Walking Dead? Variety is reporting that Frank Darabont is looking to put one of the cast members from the hit AMC series he developed – which he was infamously pushed off of last year – in his new TNT TV pilot, L.A. Noir. The big eyebrow-raiser is that this person is still on The Walking Dead… at least in the most recent episodes.
I'm going to reveal the person in question (and my speculation) below, so a big potential spoiler follows! If you'd rather not know who may or may not be leaving The Walking Dead, look away now!
One last warning...
Okay, still with me?
Well, Variety reveals that Jon Bernthal, who stars as Shane on The Walking Dead, is in "early conversations" with TNT to star in L.A. Noir, in the role of Joe Teague. Teague is an LA cop and the central character in the period piece, set in the 1940s an 50s. [L.A. Noir is based on the book of the same name, and not the video game LA Noire, though both share the same setting and time period.]
Bernthal presumably had a long-term contract with The Walking Dead, so the only way he'd be available to star in another pilot (which of course could turn into an ongoing series) in a non-guest capacity is if his commitments to The Walking Dead were over. This potential spoiler is an unfortunate side effect of casting news for new TV projects – actors need to work after one role ends for them, after all. Last year, a similar scenario occurred when a certain lead actor from Game of Thrones signed onto a role in a new ABC pilot, before the first season of Game of Thrones had even finished airing.
Variety stresses that discussions have only just begun between TNT and Bernthal and there is no certainty a deal will be finalized. But again, just the fact that Bernthal is having the talks at all make it difficult not to come to certain conclusions…