The Walking Dead‘s Andrew Lincoln has landed his first major role since leaving the zombie apocalypse series.

Lincoln is joining Naomi Watts for a film adaptation of Bradley Trevor Greive and Cameron Bloom’s best-selling novel Penguin Bloom.

The story follows a young family who, after struggling to come to terms with an accident that leaves the mother, Sam Bloom (Watts), paralysed, end up finding comfort in nursing an injured magpie chick back to health.

Naomi Watts
Stefania D’Alessandro/WireImage

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Lincoln will play Sam’s husband Cameron.

Glendyn Ivin will direct the adaptation, while Shaun Grant and Harry Cripps will write the script. Watts will produce the project along with Emma Cooper, Bruna Papandrea, Jodi Matterson and Steve Hutensky.

On bringing the story to the big screen, the producers said: “We were all captivated by this heartwarming story of resilience, the power of family and hope. We’re thrilled to have the supremely talented Andrew Lincoln on board to bring the Bloom’s story to audiences around the world.”

Andrew Lincoln, Rick Grimes, The Walking Dead, Season 9, Episode 5
Jackson Lee DavisAMC

Related: Here’s how Rick Grimes left The Walking Dead

While this is Lincoln’s first major role since leaving The Walking Dead, he will also be reprising his character from the show in a trilogy of Rick Grimes spin-off TV movies.

The new films will continue Rick’s story after the events of episode five, season nine, because being impaled and blown up apparently isn’t enough to put down this natural-born survivor.

Production on Penguin Bloom is set to begin in Sydney, Australia in August. The Walking Dead airs on AMC in the US and on FOX in the UK. You can also catch up on the show via NOW TV.

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