“The Walking Dead” may be on hiatus, but fans of the AMC series got some juicy casting news to hold them over until the February return. Following the companion series casting news earlier this week, “Missing” and “Gang Related” actor Cliff Curtis has just been announced as the male lead in the “spinoff” zombie series.

The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Curtis, 46, will be the “Rick Grimes” of the coming “Walking Dead” companion series. The actor will be portraying Sean Cabrera. But Sean Cabrera’s not a gun-toting sheriff like Andrew Lincoln’s Rick. Instead, the character is described as “a teacher who shares a son with his ex-wife, Andrea.” Similar to the Rick Grimes that fans met in the 2010 premiere of the AMC show, Sean is said to be “a good man trying to do right by everyone in his life.”

Curtis joins previously announced cast members Frank Dillane of “Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince” and Alycia Debnam Carey of “Into the Storm.” The pair will be playing the children of the other lead role on the show, a guidance counselor rumored to be named “Nancy Tompkins.” According to Entertainment Weekly, Dillane’s character is described as a “former druggie,” while Debnam Carey’s character is said to be “ambitious.” Names for the roles have yet to be confirmed, but if a character list released in late September is right, then Dillane and Debnam Carey’s roles may be Nick and Ashley.  

“Nancy Tompkins” has yet to be cast, along with a few other rumored characters from the leaked September list. Among them are Sean’s “wilted flower child” ex-wife, Andrea, and “whip-smart” but “angry” son, Cody.

The new “Walking Dead” show is being considered a “companion series” rather than a “spinoff.” While plot details have not been released, the show is said to take place in the same “universe” as the original AMC series, but set in a different location and potentially a different time during the zombie apocalypse. The characters will not be introduced on screen prior to the pilot episode.

Onboard the project behind the scenes is "Walking Dead" comic book creator Robert Kirkman, who is also an executive producer on the original series, and Dave Erickson, a producer on FX’s “Sons of Anarchy.”