Death threats are an unfortunately common way of life for anyone involved with The Walking Dead. Creator Robert Kirkman has “lived with death threats for 15 years.” Josh McDermitt quit social media because people can’t tell the difference between actor and character (“You can think whatever you want but when you start saying you hope I die, I don’t know if you’re talking about Josh or Eugene”). After Andrea shot Daryl, Norman Reedus said that Laurie Holden “came to the set and was freaking out: ‘People want to kill me!’” And Seth Gilliam, who plays Gabriel on AMC’s hit zombie series, told Entertainment Weekly that he got them, too, when the good Father betrayed Rick.
“It was kind of different for me because it’s unlike any other role that I’ve played,” he explained. “It’s had such an impact on the audience. It took a little getting used to, the death threats, and realizing they were coming from 13-year-old boys in the basement of their Wisconsin home, as opposed to people who were really meaning me harm. That had a profound impact on me, on just how seriously people are involved with the characters in the show.”
Gilliam continued, “At first it was a little uncomfortable because every actor wants to be appreciated for what they’re doing — even guys who play bad guys. Yeah, you want to dislike the bad guys, but you want to like the actor because he’s making you dislike the bad guy. And for a while, I felt the lines were kind of blurred because it’s so personal. It was like, ‘Well, wait I didn’t write these lines. This isn’t me improvising on set. This is the way the plot is going.’ So, it took a little getting used to, and I had to take a little distance. That actor love me, love me, love me thing that I think all actors have — I had to kind of put that on the back burner and realize that I still had a job to do, whether I was being loved or not. Which is kind of hard, because I think everybody wants to be loved. I think actors particularly want to be loved.”
Remember, The Walking Dead fans: Seth Gilliam is an actor second and a human first, and he needs to be loved. So, please, chill the heck out.
(Via Entertainment Weekly)