The following article contains spoilers for The Walking Dead season 9.

AMC's flagship series The Walking Dead is losing another central cast member with Danai Gurira set to exit the show at some point early on in the tenth season. Gurira has played katana-wielding Michonne since the third season and quickly became a fan favorite. It remains unclear how Michonne will be written out of the main series, but I can 100% guarantee that she won't meet a violent end. How do I know that? Well, Gurira will be joining her onscreen love interest Andrew Lincoln in a trilogy of TV movies that is currently in development.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Gurira was originally going to leave at the end of season nine but was convinced to stay onboard for "a handful" of season ten episodes. AMC has yet to confirm how many episodes a handful will equate to, but tradition dictates that it will be early on in the next season.

Andrew Lincoln bowed out as Rick Grimes after nine years of zombie carnage, his widely publicized exit angered and delighted fans in equal measures as Rick didn't perish as expected. Don't get me wrong, I was kind of relieved that Rick didn't go boom on the bridge, but it reopened the wound of Glenn's fakeout in season 7 where he hid under a dumpster. Everything about Rick's last two episodes told us to expect him to die, having been impaled on a spike he was convincingly mortally injured. Then, add some cameos from former cast members (Scott Wilson back as Hershal had an extra impact as Wilson passed away shortly after he filmed those scenes), and the show is telling us that Rick is about to join CORAALLLLLLLL! Sorry, Carl.

Lauren Cohan (Maggie) also left in the same episode as Rick (before the time jump), but her exit was off screen, and her fate remains unknown. I wouldn't be surprised if a Maggie themed spin-off or Cohan's inclusion in one of the TV movies were on the cards, but we'll have to wait and see what happens. Having survived the snap (or The Decimation if you prefer) in Infinity War, Danai Gurira will be back on our screens as Okoye in the eagerly awaited Avengers Endgame. Meanwhile, The Walking Dead returns on February 11 on AMC and will be shown shortly after on Fox for UK fans.