The Walking Dead season seven returns on October 23rd and all eyes are on supervillain Negan and who he’ll kill in the premiere. Jeffrey Dean Morgan joined Abraham actor Michael Cudlitz on Entertainment Weekly‘s Morning Live podcast and dished for an entire hour on what it’s been like to join a popular show like The Walking Dead when your character is known for murdering its stars.
As you’d expect, a lot of superfans have already taken things a bit too far in their dislike for Negan, and because he happens to plays Negan, Jeffrey Dean Morgan.
“I was with Norman [Reedus, who plays Daryl], but we had been riding motorcycles all day and we were in the middle of nowhere and stopped to get a coffee,” he recounted. “And this lady is at our car, and she’s probably 80 years old, and she comes up and just flips me off and says ‘F— you!’ And Norman falls off his chair, laughing, and I’m like ‘Whoa! Whoa!’”
Hopefully Norman let Jeffrey know that fan flipping you the bird is a sign of great esteem on The Walking Dead. But that’s not the full extent of it. Other creepy behavior has included a fan following Morgan’s vehicle home from the set at 1 AM, trying to figure out where he lived. Not cool, man. Not cool.
It’s not just the fans that are having a hard time dealing with Negan’s arrival and the deaths that are surely coming with him. Things have gotten pretty intense on set as the cast has to channel a lot of hatred and fear at Jeffrey Dean Morgan for what Negan is doing on screen.
“For sure Andrew Lincoln gets the most unnerved,” Morgan said. “He’s the most outwardly destroyed by this all, it’s the hardest for him. It’s torture.”
“Off camera it’s a whole different thing and I love them all. But when we’re at work it’s important that we all get it right, and in order to get it right you have to go places that maybe aren’t that fun,” he continued. “This has been a very hard year for everybody, including me. It’s not just a great time. It’s hard. You realize that these people are tortured by it. They’re such passionate actors, and you’re just destroying them. Negan is just destroying these characters that these actors have put together for years.”
Acting is funny like that, especially on a show like The Walking Dead. None of the characters are just riding off into the sunset. At this point everyone who leaves does so in a bloody and brutal fashion, often with several witnesses to experience the traumatizing occasion. That must be an interesting head space for the cast of the show to constantly live in. And with Negan around, season seven promises to be especially traumatic … for the actors and fans alike.