"The Walking Dead" premiere sets ratings record

Maggie Greene (Lauren Cohan) - The Walking Dead - Season 3, Episode 1 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC Gene Page/AMC

The "walkers" may be dead, but the ratings for "The Walking Dead" premiere are very much alive.

The AMC drama's third season premiere attracted 10.9 million total viewers on Sunday night, making it the most-watched telecast of any drama series in basic cable history.

The network said Monday that 7.8 million of those viewers were in the advertiser-coveted category of adults ages 18-49.

Both the total viewers and those ages 18-49 were up more than 50 percent from last year's premiere. The premiere earned 15.2 total viewers over the course of the night, including the episode's 9 p.m. debut and encores at 10 p.m. and midnight.

"Thank you to the fans for making 'The Walking Dead' such a tremendous success. We are honored and humbled that television's largest adult audience resides on AMC. So many people on both sides of the camera worked tirelessly on this project, and I thank and congratulate each of them for their amazing contribution," AMC President Charlie Collier said in a statement.

Sunday's "The Walking Dead" premiere beat the show's previous ratings record, set when 9 million viewers tuned in for last year's season finale.

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  • Jessica Derschowitz

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