As fans are well aware, Fear the Walking Dead Season 4 has also served as the first big crossover event in the Walking Dead franchise, and it's just one element that has made Fear more interesting and watchable than ever. Beyond all the big moments we've seen already, though, viewers have been wondering when we'll learn what happened at the end of Season 3, and the current whereabouts of Rubén Blades' tragedy-plagued Daniel Salazar. Check out the way showrunner Ian Goldberg spoke about Daniel's return, which potentially hints at another big crossover coming later this year.
There is a very good chance that he will appear in the Walking Dead universe. He is alive and out there. The details surrounding that are something that we're still keeping under wraps.
We might as well break this down sentence by sentence. By saying that Daniel has a good chance to "appear in the Walking Dead universe," Ian Goldberg immediately opened the speculative floodgates, since he (presumably intentionally) didn't specify that Fear the Walking Dead would be the show that Daniel would be returning to. Granted, the automatic assumption would be that the creative team would keep the casting status quo, since there haven't been any other crossover announcements. But it would have been extremely easy to just say he was likely to reappear on Fear the Walking Dead without an ounce of mystery about it.
The second thing Ian Goldberg mentioned to TVLine is that Daniel is alive and "out there," which also isn't necessarily the most straightforward word choice. We know that well over a year, and possibly even more than two years, passed between the dam's destruction in Mexico and the group's current exploits with Maggie Grace's Al. It was enough time for the group to travel up to the Diamond in Texas, as well as enough time for Morgan to make his way down south after the All Out War's conclusion. Ipso facto, it is clearly enough time for a family-less Daniel to make his own cross-country trip up north to the land of Alexandria and Hilltop, especially since The Walking Dead is making its own big time jump going into Season 9.
And finally, Goldberg mentioned that they're currently keeping the details under wraps, which just makes general sense and doesn't directly hint at any other crossover plans. But Daniel's return is clearly something that the showrunners are handling with dedicated care, and it'll likely be something that fans will celebrate. Since Season 4 has been such a refreshing change of pace, we'd have to assume Fear wouldn't bring him back in a way that resembled his return in Season 3, so it'll likely be in stark contrast to when he revealed himself to an imprisoned Strand.
As it usually goes, it's kind of impossible to ascertain whether or not Daniel Salazar will actually return for Fear the Walking Dead, or if there's a secret plan to bring him into the flagship series' locations. And we've somehow less sure about when either scenario would happen. At least for now. We'll be keeping a close eye on how things are panning out on that front, though, so stay tuned.