The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman has shed a bit more light on the question of whether star Andrew Lincoln will be exiting the AMC series during the upcoming ninth season.

In an interview with IMDB ahead of the show’s upcoming panel this week at San Diego Comic-Con, Kirkman was asked if this will be the last season for Lincoln, who plays Rick Grimes on the show. “It’s looking that way,” replied Kirkman.

“It does make the difference between the comic and the show more pronounced,” Kirkman added.

“But at the end of the day, it’s all about Andrew Lincoln,” he continued. “This is a human being. This is someone I have known for almost a decade, somebody that I love. He’s been sweating in Georgia away from his family for so long.”

Lincoln has been with the show since the series’ launch in 2010.

You can watch the complete interview below.