AMC launches ‘Talking with Chris Hardwick’ to bridge gap when ‘The Walking Dead’ is on hiatus

AMC is about to get even more Chris Hardwick-y. The Emmy-winning host of the network’s popular “Talking Dead” will now get his own late-night program — aptly titled “Talking with Chris Hardwick” — to bridge the gap when “The Walking Dead” and “Fear the Walking Dead” are not in season. The new show will air at 11 p.m. on Sunday nights beginning April 9.

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“Talking Dead” has long been the #1 talk show on all of television, even pioneering similar after-shows on rival networks. While Hardwick is well-known within the “Dead” fandom, AMC is quick to note that “Talking with Chris Hardwick” will feature “a wide breadth of guests” and spotlight “Hardwick’s singularly irreverent and authentic take on today’s pop culture landscape.” The program will be produced by Embassy Row with each 60-minute episode featuring an in-depth conversation between Hardwick and a single guest or cast ensemble.

“‘Talking’ will have the skin of ‘Talking Dead,’ the soul of the Nerdist podcast and the guts of a Comic Con panel,” Hardwick said in today’s statement. “I have loved learning how to do a talk show these last six years on ‘Talking Dead,’ but am eager to expand the format into other areas of pop culture.”

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Joel Stillerman, president of original programming and development for AMC and SundanceTV, had this to say about the host: “Chris Hardwick is just the ultimate fan guide, advocate and conversationalist. He took our desire to serve the fans of ‘The Walking Dead’ with an hour of discussion and analysis following each new episode and turned it into the #1 talk show on television, and a model that has been widely emulated but never quite duplicated, because Chris is the key.”

Hardwick has two Emmy Awards on his mantle for Best Creative Achievement in Interactive Media for Comedy Central’s “@Midnight” (2015-2016), and he was nominated for Best Interactive Program last year for “Talking Dead.” The host may want to buy a new set of gloves to protect himself from any potential trophies he may win for “Talking with Chris Hardwick,” because as Hardwick told me about his Emmy statuette, “The wings are viciously sharp! When I went to grab the award, I sank my thumb into the wing. It is a deadly weapon. You could totally kill a walker, but you’d have to stab the wing in the brain or crush its skull.”

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