Picture 125,000 zombies lumbering through the streets of San Diego. Overrunning the bayfront Convention Center, they choke all of the exit points that aren’t barricaded, clogging the sidewalks for about a quarter mile in every direction. Now make the zombies normal people (well, sort of) and you’ve got San Diego Comic-Con. Siphon off about 6,000 of them, dress some of them in colorful spandex and organize them into a line that runs out the door, under tents, down the steps, across the parking lot, and around the park by the bay, and you’ve got the line we waited in for the Comic-Con panel about AMC’s The Walking Dead. We got in, and it was worth the wait.
The cast of the show was there, along with executive producer Robert Kirkman, creator/writer of The Walking Dead comic book series, which predates the television show by about seven years. Also present were Season 1 executive producers Gale Anne Hurd and Frank Darabont, along with consulting producer and makeup artist Greg Nicotero, who talked a bit about the unbelievable zombie makeup that he and nine or ten other people apply to all the zombie extras in each episode of the show.
Things you won’t hear about in the highlight reel:
- -The fake blood is mostly corn syrup, so it tastes good. But the zombies on The Walking Dead have blackened gums and tongues from a mouthwash that is disgusting. Greg Nicotero said there are little black puddles of the stuff all over the ground wherever they shoot.
- -The show has a few people who go around Georgia to scout the locations they use in each episode.
- -The Walking Dead holds zombie school for all the extras who are cast as zombies (the casting agency is Extra Casting Atlanta).
- -Norman Reedus (Darryl Dixon on the show) was asked which job was weirder-being on The Walking Dead or working with Lady Gaga, and he said that working for the show is the weirdest job, though he loves Gaga.
Season 2 premieres on October 16th at 9pm/8 Central on AMC. We saw the scare-the-__-out-of-you trailer for Season 2, and now you can see it too, along with highlights from the panel.
Watch highlights from The Walking Dead: Comic-Con Panel 2011