Is ‘Walking Dead’s’ Shane a Goner? Bernthal May Join New Darabont Pilot

Shane Walsh (Jon Bernthal) fighting zombies in "The Walking Dead" (Gene Page/AMC)

We don’t normally dive into the minutiae of casting news, but when we see that the star of a hit show is in any kind of talks to star in another, we sit up and take notice. Variety and TV Guide have the news that Jon Bernthal, who currently stars as Shane Walsh in AMC’s “The Walking Dead,” is on TNT’s short list to star in “L.A. Noir,” the new show from “TWD’s” former showrunner, Frank Darabont.

So, does that mean that Shane is doomed?

Well, let’s just say it doesn’t look good. Shane has been positioned as a wildcard among the ragtag group that have taken residence at the farm of Hershel Greene (Scott Wilson). Opposing the in-control Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln), Shane has been portrayed as someone who will stop at nothing to survive, including shooting someone in the knee and leaving him for a horde of zombies.

Both the show’s creator, Robert Kirkman, and the new showrunner, Glen Mazzara, have alluded to the fact that in the second half of the season, the gang will be facing dangers from fellow humans as well as the walkers. “I’d say they’re both dangerous people off the farm and dangerous people already on the farm,” said Mazzara, which is a not-so-veiled reference to the increasingly skittish Shane.

The Variety report mentions that the talks are barely underway, so this may all be moot, no matter what happens to Bernthal’s character on “TWD” this season. But the fact that he’s even being considered for a new pilot shows that the powers that be in Hollywood know something that we don’t.

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