'The Walking Dead' renewed by AMC for Season 5

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"The Walking Dead" is coming back for a fifth season. Only three episodes into Season 4, AMC announced the renewal in a press release.

Scott Gimple will continue to act as showrunner in Season 5. He took over the show in Season 4 after the departure of Glen Mazzara. All told, Gimple will have the longest run as showrunner on "The Walking Dead" if he continues through the end of Season 5 (both Frank Darabont and Mazzara only worked on about a season and a half each).

"The Walking Dead's" Season 4 premiere brought in record ratings for the series, drawing 20.2 million viewers. The episode order for Season 5 wasn't announced, but it seems likely that it will once again be 16 episodes.

"We are very happy to make what has to be one of the most anti-climactic renewal announcements ever: 'The Walking Dead' is renewed for a fifth season," AMC President Charlie Collier says in a statement. "This is a show that has erased traditional distinctions between cable and broadcast. Its expanding base of passionate fans has grown every season, most recently -- and most notably -- with the season four premiere earlier this month, which broke viewership records for the series and became the biggest non-sports telecast in cable history. On behalf of the incredible team on both sides of the camera, thank you to the fans and here's to more 'Dead.'"

In addition to "The Walking Dead" Season 5, AMC is also developing a companion series with Robert Kirkman, Gale Anne Hurd and David Alpert.

Photo/Video credit: AMC