Andrew Lincoln has discussed the upcoming seventh season of The Walking Dead, revealing that the show is “heading towards a bigger ending point” than its controversial sixth season cliffhanger suggested.
Lincoln plays protagonist Rick Grimes on the hit AMC show, which depicts the aftermath of a world ravaged by a zombie apocalypse. The Walking Dead left many fans frustrated with the conclusion of the last season back in April, after a tense finale saw the show’s new antagonist, Negan, murder one of Rick’s group, only for viewers to be denied knowledge of who his victim was.
Speaking to Entertainment Weekly, Lincoln revealed that shooting that climatic scene in particular was a challenge, as the cast had to return in full to film the harrowing conclusion when shooting for season seven began.
“As the season finished, the story was about Rick being broken and realising that basically everything that he thought has been turned upside down in the space pretty of much of a day,” Lincoln said. “The world that he fought and strove for for so long has irrevocably changed.
“I remember my mother said to me, ‘That’s going to be quite a challenge to get back into that state that you were straight after a break,’” the actor continued. “And I just said, ‘Thanks, mum. That’s kind of my job, thank you.’”
Lincoln also revealed that Norman Reedus, who plays Daryl, had some “eloquent” words for their departed castmember once the identity of Negan’s victim had been revealed.
“He said, ‘You know, somebody’s going to lose their job at the end of that.’ It’s a big deal, man. It’s a big deal. It’s a family on set.”
Speaking about how his character would have felt during that cliffhanger scene, Lincoln said that Rick would’ve been adversely affected by having been bested by his new adversary.
“You meet a man who’s powerless, terrified for his own life and his son’s family’s life, and everybody else beside him. And he realises that there’s a new world, a much bigger, scarier, and formidable world.”
Asked to sum up how the seventh season of the show will pan out, Lincoln teased that the dynamic of the show would be dramatically altered by Negan’s introduction.
“It’s just a continuation of a much bigger story,” Lincoln said. “We’re heading towards a bigger end point.”
The seventh season of The Walking Dead will premiere on AMC in the US on October 23, and is expected to air on FX in the UK the day after (October 24). Watch the trailer below.