The Walking Dead Producer Denies Killing Off Too Many Black Characters
AMC’s ‘The Walking Dead’ has been one of the biggest shows in television history. The zombie driven show continues to draw fans in every week with the bad azz acting and incredible plot twists but there’s been controversy about some of the Black characters on the series.
Executive Producer Gale Anne Hurd sat down with Variety to chat about the season finale tonight and denies that the writers have purposely killed off many of the popular Black characters:
Variety: There’s been some controversy this season over the deaths of three significant black male characters (Lawrence Gilliard Jr. as Bob, Chad L. Coleman as Tyreese and Tyler James Williams as Noah). Was there any debate about that in the writers room or after the reaction on social media?
Gale: We have to go with the story. It’s really important to cast the best actors. Two of those characters were white in the comics. They could’ve been any ethnicity. Our casting calls are completely open and we always go with the best actor. Would African American actors want to be told, “We’re not casting you, because in the storyline we’re going to kill you off?” That’s how we have to look at it. We want the best actor and then we have to stick to the storyline that was crafted months before we even cast the roles.
The season finale has been supersized to 90 minutes. How was that decision made?
The story was not actually an incredibly long page count, but when the first cut came in it was clear that we were never going to be able to pare it down to the typical running time. It was actually the best way to tell the story, as opposed to any initial intent going in. AMC absolutely embraced it and agreed.
Michael Cudlitz was quoted saying the finale will “piss people off.” Do you agree with that assessment or would you put it a little differently?
I would say they’ll be pissed off they have to wait until October when the series starts up again, that would be the only thing. I don’t know that they’d be pissed off, I hope instead that there’s a great sense of longing for us to be back.
Is Michonne next??!?