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The Walking Dead - Danai Gurira on Filming Naked Bed Scene & Intense Midseason Premiere

As we head into the last two “Walking Dead” episodes of the season, actress Danai Gurira (Michonne) is breaking down some of the important moments of the second half of the season. And she details what it was like to film them. Gurira spoke to fans at the Salt Lake Comic Con FanX this weekend. She talked about filming the action-packed midseason premiere and shooting that infamous naked bed scene.

Gurira said she definitely had second thoughts before shooting that scene without her clothes. “I had my little shock moment,” she admits. “When I was in the other room getting prepped, I considered jumping out the window and running down the street. [But] I was like, “I can do this, I can do this.”

Actor Tom Payne, who plays Jesus, added to her pre-scene jitters. The character of Jesus breaks into the room when Michonne and Rick are sleeping – and the couple jumps out of bed naked. Though Payne had been hanging out with Gurira and the cast for a while, this was their first actual scene together. “I can’t believe this is the first scene I’m doing with you!’” she remembers telling him. But his response amused her. “He’s British. He was like, ‘Don’t worry about it, darling,” Gurira recalls. “I’m like, ‘Yeah, you say don’t worry about it!’” In the end, though, Gurira says they kept it light and fun. “The last time I saw him before we shot, he was like, ‘I’ll see you in bed!’”

When it came time to actually film the scene, Gurira says she didn’t anticipate how many crew members would be in the room. “I kind of thought it would just be like two people,” she says. “I walked in the room at first and I was like ‘Ahhhhhhh.’ There were six cameramen behind you as you jump out of that bed, the ADs (assistant directors) and the boom guy, Max – me and Max are real close now. He was right next to me! But it was fun, it was fun. It was very bonding and ultimately we had a great time that evening. At the end of the day it was like, ‘Now I’ll do it any time – whatever. Done that!’”

That was a very different experience from filming the episode prior – the midseason premiere where Carl gets shot in the eye. Gurira says those scenes were powerful. “That moment when he’s shot – I don’t know that he’s been shot in the eye,” Gurira explains in character. “All I know is that Ron has shot at him and Rick, and then I take Ron out. Then me and Rick realize simultaneously that Carl has been shot. It was so intense – turning around, looking at each other.”

Gurira has nothing but praise for co-star Andrew Lincoln as she watched his face: “Andy played it so beautifully. He kind of looks up at [Michonne] like, ‘What are we going to do?’ just in shock and horror. And then I turn around and start to run. And he picks up Carl and we just know what we’re going to do – we’re going to run to Denise. We don’t say it, we don’t discuss it, we’re just going to do it.” As she and Lincoln ran up a hill with a cameraman in front of them, Lincoln’s performance continued to wow her. “The sobs coming out of him, it was just really, really intense – and frightening. This is both [Michonne’s and Rick’s] worst nightmares. So it was a very intense scene to shoot.”

No doubt we can expect more intense scenes in the final two episodes of the season.

To see these and more clips from Gurira’s panel, click on our SpoilerTV video below. Gurira talks about the bond between Carl and Michonne, how she’d like Michonne to have time to enjoy her new love with Rick, what she enjoyed about episode 14 and how she’s different or similar to her character.

About the Author - Tonya Papanikolas
Tonya Papanikolas is an online, print and broadcast journalist who loves covering entertainment and television. She spent more than 10 years as a broadcast news anchor and reporter. Now she does everything from hosting to writing. She especially loves writing TV articles and reviews for SpoilerTV.