The History Channel's hit original series Vikings is coming to an end after the upcoming sixth season, but a spin-off is reportedly in the works.
A representative for the network told Deadline the show is ending with the sixth season, which will start at the end of the year and conclude in early 2020. The show is now in its fifth season, with the finale scheduled for Jan. 30.
History is in talks with MGM Television, which produced the show, and creator Michael Hirst to keep the franchise alive with a spin-off. If the project moves forward, Hirst will be joined by film writer Jeb Stuart (The Fugitive, Die Hard).
Vikings will end its run with 89 episodes, all written and executive produced by Hirst. The show is the top-rated scripted drama for History, and has continue to pull in big audiences even after star Travis Fimmel left the show at the end of Season 4. The most recent episode drew 2.7 million total viewers, including 895,000 viewers in the key 18-49 demographic, when three days of DVR viewing is included.
The series kicked off in 2013 and focused on Fimmel's hero Ragnar Lothbrok. After he left, the show continued by focusing on his family, including Alexander Ludwig's Bjorn Ironside and Alex Hogh Andersen's Ivar the Boneless. It was loosely based on real historical figures.
Other members of the Season 5 cast include Katheryn Winnick, John Kavanagh, Jasper Paakkonen, Mor Dunford, Arco Ilso, Jordan Patrick Smith and Jonathan Rhys Meyers. Winnick, who plays Lagertha, directed an episode for the upcoming season.
In a recent interview with Entertainment Tonight, Hirst teased a big plot twist in the Season 5 finale.
"There is an extraordinary twist right at the end of the season, which brings about a change that you just haven't seen coming, that seemed impossible," the writer told the outlet. "So basically, you will experience, as you watch it, very unexpected twists and turns. But right at the end, there is something that — a story changing, and you can't see that coming."
Winnick told ET that directing was "one of the most challenging yet the most rewarding experience of my life," adding, "It was a huge undertaking to take on, especially on the massive show of Vikings, with hundreds of cast members and the epic scale of everything, and the success of the show. I couldn't be more proud of my episode, so I feel grateful that I got the opportunity to do it."
With its flagship scripted show ending, History is preparing to launch the Robert Zemeckis-produced Project Blue Book on Jan. 8. The network is also home to Knightfall, which centers on the Knights Templar in the early 1300s and is expected to return in the spring for Season 2.
New episodes of Vikings air on Wednesdays at 9 p.m. ET on the History Channel.
Photo credit: History Channel