Lauren Cohan is returning to The Walking Dead. Cohan unveiled herself during TWD’s New York Comic Con panel on Saturday, where it was learned the Maggie Rhee star will return in Season 10. Cohan will then rejoin the show as a series regular in Season 11, also confirmed by AMC on Saturday.
“I’m so excited to surprise the fans. I know we left Maggie Rhee up in the air and I can’t wait to bring this to them,” Cohan told the AMC blog. “I’ve always been a big fan of surprises. My family lives between England and America, so my whole life is about how to make an elaborate plan and not spoil it. [Laughs] I’m really happy. Angela [Kang, showrunner], Scott [M. Gimple, TWD chief content officer] and I have been talking about how we could make this work and everything just aligned. I’m super excited to see what this next chapter of Maggie will be.”
Cohan stepped away from TWD Universe to headline spy action-comedy Whiskey Cavalier, later cancelled by ABC after just one season.
“The weird thing is that it never really leaves you,” said Cohan, whose Maggie first appeared in Season 2 in 2011.
“I don’t feel like I left. I do stay in touch with everybody on a regular basis. My friends on the show know that this has been in the works,” she added. “This reentry is going to feel like going home. I get to go out to Atlanta and spend some time on set shadowing one of our directors, Daisy Mayer, this month. Maybe that will be my soft reentry into the universe — or the Georgia weather — but in general, the character never leaves you. It’s a necessity for me to keep her alive.”
Following Cohan’s quiet departure in Season 9 episode 905, “What Comes After,” Siddiq (Avi Nash) revealed Hilltop leader Maggie had relocated someplace far away during the six-year time jump that followed the presumed death of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln). To the surprise of Michonne (Danai Gurira), Maggie left the Hilltop colony to assist benefactor Georgie (Jayne Atkinson) with a new, unnamed community.
When Maggie returns, it will be with a now six-year-old Hershel — son of the late Glenn (Steven Yeun) — by her side.
“There are definitely things she will have picked up on the road and there’s also the relationship with her son and how growing with him has affected her,” Cohan said. “Or even what has been happening, I’m in a liberated position to actually not know enough to give spoilers at this point! It’s a nice surprise to come back to these changes, understand what motivates her return, what happened while she was out there and who’s still going to be here when she returns. We have a lot to unpack.”