AMC, the U.S. TV network that created Mad Men and Breaking Bad, has plans for a new series based on Robert Kirkman's popular zombie comics.

The Walking Dead will have its premiere next October, initially as a six-part series.

The graphic novels, which first appeared in 2003, follow the fortunes of a small band of survivors after a zombie apocalypse. The action centres around Rick Grimes, a former police officer who wakes in hospital after much of his town is taken over by zombies.

The cable network bought the rights to the graphic novels last August.

The TV series will be adapted for the screen and directed by Oscar-nominated Frank Darabont, who also helmed The Shawshank Redemption. Kirkman is executive producer.

AMC plans to launch the series this October during its annual Fearfest marathon of thriller and horror films.