Preview for Michael Cudlitz’s Return to ‘The Walking Dead’ Released

AMC has released the preview for The Walking Dead 907, “Stradivarius.” Per the official synopsis:

Carol seeks out an old friend living alone in a wilderness teeming with walkers; survivors make the perilous trek to a new home.

Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Siddiq (Avi Nash) will lead a pack of newcomers to the Hilltop, while the survivors contend with a dangerous new type of enemy.

906, “Who Are You Now?,” ended with Carol (Melissa McBride) encountering Daryl (Norman Reedus), who has spent the past six years in self-imposed exile following the apparent death of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln).

“Stradivarius” marks the directorial debut of former Abraham Ford star Michael Cudlitz, and acts as “a big Daryl episode,” Reedus told Skybound.

Cudlitz “jumped into a really hard episode to direct” with “a lot of different directions going,” making the episode more cinematic.

“It was one of those episodes you read it and you’re like oh, we need four weeks to shoot it. But that guy, he came in and did so much homework. He did more prep than a lot of the directors, to be honest. He came ready to play.”

The first time director helped steer a cast of new arrivals, including series newcomers Magna (Nadia Hilker), Yumiko (Eleanor Matsuura), Connie (Lauren Ridloff), Kelly (Angel Theory) and Luke (Dan Fogler), as well as Judith Grimes (Cailey Fleming) and her little brother, the child of Rick and Michonne (Danai Gurira).

“The great thing about directing the cast was that the cast is changing now, so I had a wonderful experience about being [able] to direct, basically half of my cast was brand new and the rest were people that I have longstanding, amazing relationships with,” Cudlitz told TheWrap.

His first episode as director helps establish “the early roots of what some of these new characters will be, because, as everyone who watches the show understands, the early episodes where you learn a lot about the characters really do set the tone of how they are perceived and received from there on out.”

The episode will see the debut of Daryl’s dog, and will continue to establish the newly emerged threat of the Whisperers.

“You tend to come into the show with a loud voice, make an imprint, and then get woven into the fabric of the show,” Cudlitz said.

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“So these few episodes where they do have a very loud voice and a prominent voice, they are establishing who they are and how they feel about things and it was fun to be part of that. We had a lot, a lot of elements of the show that are new elements: animals, kids, American Sign Language. A lot, a lot of elements.”

The Walking Dead 907, “Stradivarius,” premieres Sunday, November 18 at 9/8c on AMC.