The Walking Dead's Season Seven premiere was one of the most unforgettable episodes for fans of the series, and the same can be said for its cast.
As Simon actor Steven Ogg recalls, the days which saw Jeffrey Dean Morgan's introduction as the show's Negan being carried out were some of the most intense of the series. The actors were pushed to places they may have never been forced to endure through their careers.
"[Those days] were exhausting," Ogg said. "It was because of what was going on, obviously. That family unit was quite tight, and then there's these new people, you know? Literally making quite the entrance. They're all like, 'What the hell's going on?' It was very emotional, plus you're shooting over night, and it's long nights, and it's a very emotional time for people, and it was tough."
The audience may have shared a similar reaction, but the cast managed to find bright spots in the time on set when they weren't forced to portray characters watching people be brutally murdered.
The Bright Spots
While the Season Seven premiere was all drama and sadness for audiences, the cast found levity and comfort in each other's presence between takes.
"It's like moments on the show when people say, 'What are your favorite moments? Or what have been your favorite moments?'" Ogg said. "Honestly, a lot of it is the moments in between the work. It's getting to know these amazing people, and talking to these amazing people. Waiting three hours to shoot and just chatting. The level of humanity and the love that we all have for each other, and respect, that's what you carry with you. The moment that you're in and you do, you do. Then you leave, and it's done. Whereas, the human connection outside of what the work is is what is really lasting."
Ogg has quickly become well-integrated to that Walking Dead family, making connections with several cast members.
"Everyone is so welcoming and so wonderful," Ogg said. "They're all ridiculously close off the set that they just make you feel completely welcome and it was such a safe environment that you immediately feel like, 'All right, you're excited. Let's get down to it, like what do we get to play today?' And this extends throughout, really, everyone -- production, and cast."
Following The Walking Dead's Season Seven premiere, Daryl Dixon actor Norman Reedus teased a bit of what his character experienced during the beat downs of Glenn and Abraham. Spoiler alert: it wasn't fun.
"[Daryl] goes very, very dark," Reedus said. "He does certain things that he can't go back from. He goes to a very, very dark, dark place. It's a combination of hatred. It's a combination of self-loathing. It's different from when he first started on the show. He has a big chip on his shoulder. He thought people wouldn't like him. He didn't give a shit. He hates you, too. It turns now into he kind of hates himself. He hates the world that we're in, and he doesn't lose the fight in him, but he definitely no longer sees anything good in the world, that's for sure."
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Steven Ogg's role in The Walking Dead can be caught in The Walking Dead: The Complete Seventh Season which is available on Blu-ray now.
The Walking Dead's sibling series Fear the Walking Dead returns September 10th. The Walking Dead will return for its eighth season on October 22, 2017. The Season Eight premiere will mark 100 episodes overall for the popular AMC series. For complete coverage and insider info all season long, follow @BrandonDavisBD on Twitter.