Television used to be a pretty tame medium without a lot of the sex. violence, and heavy themes we’re used to seeing in movies. But that’s changed over the past several years, and now it’s TV that’s delivering some of the most shocking, thought-provoking moments. The Walking Dead is no stranger to controversy, and some of the scenes from the show have been so intense actors have almost quit over them.
Here’s Lauren Cohan, who plays Maggie on the show, explaining one such moment on Inside The Actor’s Studio (via Comic Book Resource):
“The script where Maggie has to give the character Laurie a C-section to save the baby that becomes baby Judith. We all live in the same apartment building – we’re ridiculously incestuous in this cast – so I go two doors down and I knock on Steven [Yuen]’s door and I said, ‘I have to leave the show. I don’t think I can do it.’ It affects you so deeply to the core to dive into so much of this material, and that’s when I realized that’s why I have to do it, because the outcome of that – as heinous and as sleeplessly that affected me, and I’m sure that affected people who watched it – we watch to feel and to hopefully, honestly portray something.”
“Bad stuff happens, and what’s the point in not getting real about it. Ironically enough, as hot as this is, the deeper you go into it, you just have to let all that resistance go and then it’s easier. I always feel like a rattlesnake coming out of its skin because you just lost a part of yourself that ended up being something you really didn’t want that ended up being a barrier or a defense.”
It’s interesting to think about this aspect of The Walking Dead. For us, it’s just an hour of entertainment in our week. But the actors need to get up inside the heads of their characters and really feel everything that’s going on – which in The Walking Dead‘s case means an endless tide of violence, death, and loss. At a certain point that must get mentally exhausting, and I wonder if anyone on the cast has ever basically tapped out and told the producers to go ahead and feed their characters to the zombies.
Who knows, maybe that’s what happened with Lauren Cohan. The rumor mill continues to speculate on whether her character dies during the second half of season six, and a recent extreme haircut has only added fuel to that fire. Whatever happens, you now know how seriously she and the others on The Walking Dead take their roles, which just adds to my appreciation for the show.
The Walking Dead returns February 14th at 9PM on AMC. The entire cast’s appearance on Inside The Actor’s Studio airs on Bravo Februay 11th at 8PM.