Following Carl Grimes untimely death on AMC's The Walking Dead, Chandler Riggs' father, William, made it clear he was unhappy with the way AMC and showrunner Scott Gimple handled his son's exit from the show.
"Just to clarify once and for all: Chandler didn’t want to leave the show," William wrote on Facebook. "He had been accepted at UGA, and would complete school while working (online when filming)as he had done high school for the last 8 years. Scott Gimple personally called him and said on a conference call in April that they needed him for 3 years. Chandler agreed to a 2 year contract, which was typical. 1 year guaranteed and the next one at their option, which was also typical. He signed the deal, graduated from high school and went back to work. He bought a house near the set and enrolled at UGA so that he could be close to work since we had been commuting nearly 2 hours each way all these years."
"It was the middle of June, his 18th birthday was coming up in a couple of weeks, 5 episodes were filmed, and they asked for my wife and I to both be at a meeting with Chandler- which was a little odd," he continued. "It made me nervous but he and his manager assured me it was to plan for filming schedule, etc. Scott Gimple was the only one there and he told us that Carl would be gone in a few episodes. Chandler was absolutely devastated. I was disappointed Scott had been dishonest with a 17 year old making life decisions and waited to tell us."
"After it aired, I was asked to comment on how I felt," William added. "I did, maybe shouldn’t have. 3 hours later AMC asked me to take the comment down- which I did- 6 hours later TMZ called and wanted me on and I declined. None of it has ever really been about me. Don’t know why anyone would say anything about me- but that’s ok- teaching Chandler to disregard negativity came with the deal so I can do it too lol. I never made it difficult for my son, our family had to work together to make it possible for him. Extremely grateful for the opportunity and 8 great years; as a parent I felt Chandler had earned better treatment, but that’s the biz. Unkind timing."
Riggs made the comment through the business account, "Chandler Riggs' Dad's Zombie Roadtrip Riggs' Tours & Autographs."
Carl was bitten by a zombie in the mid-season finale of The Walking Dead Season 8. He was then killed in the mid-season premiere. Since the character's death, the series has seen a number of high-profile exits. Andrew Lincoln -- who plays Rick Grimes -- left the show, though he's set to appear in a trilogy of films based on the character. Danai Gurira, who plays Michonne, will reportedly leave the series in Season 10, and it's unclear at this time what that means for her character's future.
The Walking Dead airs Sundays at 9 p.m. ET on AMC. The series returns for the second half of Season 9 on February 10.