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Could Dead actor's potential new role mean character's demise?

Date January 24, 2012

LOS ANGELES (TheWrap.com) - (Spoiler alert: Don't read this if you don't even want to think about a central "Walking Dead" character leaving.)

Is Shane doomed on "The Walking Dead"?

Actor Jon Bernthal is in talks to star in the pilot for TNT's cop drama "L.A. Noir," according to Variety. The pilot, to be directed by former "Walking Dead" showrunner Frank Darabont, would feature Bernthal as Joe Teague, a Los Angeles cop who battles local mobsters in the 1940s and '50s, which doesn't sound especially promising for his character on "The Walking Dead," Deputy Shane Walsh.

Bernthal's rep didn't immediately respond to TheWrap's request for comment on his future with either show.

Shane has certainly ticked off plenty of his fellow survivors -- he carried on an affair with the wife of his best friend (and may be the father of her unborn child). He's also butted heads with fellow survivor Dale, and set off the mass killing -- well, re-killing -- of the walkers hidden on Hershel's farm.

So, does a new job in real life (and a reunion with Darabont, from whom Bernthal has expressed much admiration) + a character who continues to alienate himself =TV Shane fated to die?

We can't look to the graphic novels that inspired the show for any clues about Shane's fate: The show's writers have said they feel free to depart from them.

"The Walking Dead" returns with new season two episodes on AMC on February 12.

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