AMC originally renewed "Hell on Wheels" back in October, but rescinded the renewal
within days after showrunner John Shiban elected to leave the period Western. At the time, AMC said that the renewal would be contingent on finding a new showrunner.
AMC announced on Wednesday (December 12) that John Wirth
will be joining "Hell on Wheels" as executive producer and showrunner, activating the greenlight for a 10-episode third season scheduled to premiere in the third quarter of 2013.
Credits for Wirth include "V," "The Cape" and "Terminator: The Sarah Connor Chronicles," offering hope that aliens, comic book villains or time travel are going to be introduced in Season 3.
"As we gear up for season three of ‘Hell on Wheels’ we are pleased to have such an accomplished show runner as John Wirth join our team," blurbs Susie Fitzgerald, AMC’s SVP of scripted development and current programming. "With the help of our partners at Entertainment One, Endemol and Nomadic, we look forward to a new season of the poetic and pulpy adventures of Cullen Bohannan and the other characters as they build the railroad across the US."
"Hell on Wheels," which stars Anson Mount, Common and Colm Meaney, completed its second season in October, averaging 2.4 million viewers per week in live figures and 3.2 million in Live+7.
"We’re delighted to continue our relationship with AMC, Endemol and Nomadic Pictures," adds Michael Rosenberg, Executive VP, US Scripted Television, Entertainment One Television. "John Wirth is an incredible talent who will drive our roaring series and build on the strength and success of the ‘Hell on Wheels’ brand."