Andrew Lincoln in ‘The Walking Dead.’

The Walking Dead‘s Andrew Lincoln will star opposite Naomi Watts in Penguin Bloom, the adaptation of Bradley Trevor Greive and Cameron Bloom’s novel to be directed by Glendyn Ivin.

Lincoln will portray Cameron Bloom, the husband of Watt’s Sam Bloom in the drama based on the true story of a young Sydney family who struggle to come to terms with a near-fatal accident that left their mother paralyzed.

An unlikely ally enters their lives in the form of an injured Magpie chick, which the family dubbed ‘Penguin’ due to her black and white plumage.

Scripted by Shaun Grant and Harry Cripps and produced by Watts, Emma Cooper and Made Up Stories’ Bruna Papandrea, Jodi Matterson and Steve Hutensky, the production will start shooting in early August.

The producers said: “We were all captivated by this heart-warming 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.”

Screen Australia provided major production investment with support from Create NSW. Roadshow will distribute in Australasia and Endeavor Content is handling worldwide sales. The rest of the cast facilitated by casting directors Kirsty McGregor and Stevie Ray is yet to be announced.

Lincoln reprises his role as Rick Grimes in the upcoming The Walking Dead film, directed by Greg Nicotero, which Universal will distribute theatrically. He left the show last year. The 10th season will premiere on AMC in the US in October.

Watts is wrapping the Game of Thrones prequel pilot, co-created by George R.R. Martin and Jane Goldman, for HBO, after playing Gretchen Carlson in Showtime’s The Loudest Voice, which starred Russell Crowe as former Fox News chief Roger Ailes.

She will next be seen in Julius Onah’s drama Luce with Octavia Spencer and Tim Roth and in Alistair Banks Griffin’s The Wolf Hour with Jennifer Ehle and Jeremy Bobb.

Some 10 per cent of the book’s worldwide royalties are being donated to leading spinal cord injury research charities including SpinalCure Australia, Wings for Life and the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.

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