The Walking Dead’s Sarah Wayne Callies Says Lori Grimes Return Would Be Jumping the Shark

Former The Walking Dead star Sarah Wayne Callies, who played Lori Grimes for the first three seasons of the zombie drama, admits bringing back the killed off wife of Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and mother of Carl (Chandler Riggs) and Judith Grimes (Cailey Fleming) would mean the show "jumped the shark." The actress continued to play Lori after the character's death in Season 3 episode "Killer Within," where Lori died delivering Judith. Callies' Lori manifested as a haunting figure to a mentally strained Rick, whose feelings of unresolved guilt caused him to hallucinate visions of his estranged wife intermittently throughout the remainder of that season.

"I don't watch the show, I never watched the show, but I have heard from fans that I was eaten from head to toe, apparently. I'm delicious," Callies said on The IMDb Show, referring to Lori's corpse that was discovered by Rick to have been entirely consumed by a stray walker. "I think if they did [leave it open], it wasn't intentional. I really do. There is no spoiler hidden anywhere in my heart, which is, 'Season 15, it's Lori's time!'"

Asked if she would be willing to return to The Walking Dead, Callies said, "If I ever got the call, the show would have jumped the shark so thoroughly. It would be like, '[Scott] Gimple [former showrunner turned chief content officer], Angela [Kang, showrunner], I love you guys. It's time to hang up the zombies, come on.'"

"Look, I love those people. But the only people I know involved right now are some of the writers, and some of the directors, and Norman [Reedus]," Callies added. "Everybody I know on that show is dead."

Reedus' Daryl Dixon and Melissa McBride's Carol Peletier are the last-surviving characters still with the series from Callies' time on The Walking Dead. While Callies never filmed another hallucination sequence or flashback past Season 3, she was among the former Walking Dead stars who made a brief voice cameo in Season 9 episode "What Comes After," Lincoln's final episode of the television show.

Callies' fondest memory of The Walking Dead is her character's death scene, where Lori tearfully says goodbye to Carl as Maggie (Lauren Cohan) delivers the child born from Lori's affair with Shane (Jon Bernthal).

"It was a lot, and my only concern that scene was that Chandler be okay, and he killed it. He was an amazing actor," Callies said. "I walked off of set, and sitting right behind the set that we'd been shooting on, was the entire cast. They had all come on a day off, an hour from Atlanta, just to be there and just to be supportive and show love. To work for a group of people who are willing to do that for one another is really beautiful."

Last March, Callies posed for a Grimes family photo with Riggs and Fleming aboard a Walking Dead-themed cruise where Fleming met Judith's birth mother for the first time. Callies has since acknowledged Michonne (Danai Gurira) and Rick as Judith's true parents.


Callies intended to return to TWD Universe as director on Season 5 of spinoff Fear the Walking Dead, but later pulled out when filming conflicted with NBC family drama Council of Dads.

New episodes of The Walking Dead Season 10 premiere Sundays on AMC. For all things TWD, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.