The world of The Walking Dead was rocked yesterday after news broke that fan-favorite actor Scott Wilson had tragically passed away in a bout with leukemia, prompting an outpouring of support from friends, family, and fans who recognized the legacy of the prominent actor.
Those who are looking forward to Talking Dead with Chris Hardwick should know that the episode airing after the Season 9 premiere of The Walking Dead will not have the guests address the tragic death for one very simple reason, as the host explained on social media:
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I am utterly broken hearted to hear about the passing of Scott Wilson this evening. We had just completed the NYCC Walking Dead panel on which the crowd erupted in cheers when Angela Kang announced that he’d be appearing on season 9 at some point. A little less than an hour later I got the terrible news. All of the best parts of Hershel Greene came from Scott—he was so incredibly sweet, warm, and wise. When we lost Hershel on the show it was a week after my own father passed away and when Scott came on Talking Dead he said so many kind and wonderful things to me afterwards that brought me great comfort. I really will miss him and the gentle, compassionate eyes that gave Hershel so much soul. I am so sad to know that the world is without him tonight. It’s important to me to let you know that we pretaped the first episode of Talking Dead last week when the cast members were in LA for the WD premiere screening so please know that is the only reason why we don’t pay our respects to him in our show tomorrow. #RIPScottWilson
"It’s important to me to let you know that we pretaped the first episode of Talking Dead last week when the cast members were in LA for the WD premiere screening so please know that is the only reason why we don’t pay our respects to him in our show tomorrow," Hardwick wrote.
Of course, that's not to say they won't include a title card on the show, or that they didn't have time to film some sort of quick segment honoring the late memory of Wilson. It's just the reason why the absence is looming over the guests, who will be covering the events of the season premiere.
Wilson's passing was announced nearly an hour after it was revealed the actor had returned for Andrew Lincoln and Lauren Cohan's final episodes in Season 9. It's not exactly clear just how his character of Hershel Greene will appear in the new season, but he did reprise his role before his tragic passing.
Hours after the announcement was made at New York Comic Con, AMC issued a statement to honor the actor's death:
"Scott will always be remembered as a great actor and we all feel fortunate to have known him as an even better person. The character he embodied on The Walking Dead, Hershel, lived at the emotional core of the show," said AMC's statement. "Like Scott in our lives, Hershel was a character whose actions continue to inform our character’s choices to this day. Our hearts go out to his wife, his family, friends and to the millions of fans who loved him. Scott will be missed."
Fans who want to see Wilson in one of his final roles should tune into the new season of The Walking Dead, premiering tonight on AMC.