Danai Gurira Talks The Walking Dead’s Michonne, Glen Mazarra Talks Annoying Lori


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Danai Gurira won the coveted role of Michonne on AMC’s The Walking Dead and it seems as if she can’t wait to dig in. While viewers are eager to see her in action, some are getting fed up with one of the other female actors on the show, namely Sarah Wayne Callies’ Lori. Hit the jump to hear what Gurira has to say about playing Michonne and what showrunner Glen Mazzara has to say about Lori haters. 

Gurira wasn’t a Walking Dead viewer until just recently but told the Hollywood Reporter she is now. “I got to really get acquainted with it during these last few weeks and fell completely in love with it. I’m absolutely hooked,” she said. The actress says she’s still pinching herself over the news of landing the role but is already nervous about the job. “I definitely feel pressure but I’m ready to take the character on,” she said. “I’m excited that she has an amazing following and team of creators and writers. I’m up for the challenge.”

Gurira admitted to reading some Archie back in the day but says she isn’t a comic reader now, although she’s read up on Michonne. “I’m kind of mind-blown about the concept right now because I’m just stepping into it,” she told them. “I understand the way she is drawn in the graphic novels — she’s so amazing. I’m excited to embody that and be a badass. I’ve always yearned to do that. I’m really thrilled she already has so much support.”

She also mentioned she’s excited to get to work with Laurie Holden’s Andrea next season. THR asked how she thought viewers will respond to two strong female characters at the forefront of the show. “That’s always exciting and intriguing to see. That’s something I’d love to see and I’m excited to be able to enact it. I love kick-ass women and women who can get out there and do their thing and make things work for themselves,” she said. “I’m thrilled to experience it and I think the audiences will appreciate the energy and the life that will come out through these women.”

THR also asked her how much of what she reads about Michonne in the comic would make it into her performance. “I’m going to develop that with [showrunner] Glen Mazzara and the whole creative team. They have their own take on the source material. I’m going to be meeting with them next week to get an understanding of what their take is and how she grows and develops,” she said. “I’ll find out the answer to that in the coming weeks in terms of exactly how she will map out with what she is in the books vs. what she will be on the screen. I’ll be learning as I go in some regards. I do know that she remains an absolute badass and I will be training with katana swords. I’m really excited about that.”

Aren’t we all?

Speaking of Mazzara, the showrunner directly addressed fans taking issue with the character of Lori.

“I think Lori is a compelling, interesting character. I think she is realistic in a lot of ways and she’s certainly a character that people are talking about. So I don’t find her irritating,” he said, adding he thinks it’s interesting people are so focused on her. “But, you know, I don’t know if we really need to start creating false [story] beats to make her more likeable. That’s not part of the plan.”

He also discussed the Grimes’ parenting skills. “I don’t know if it’s plausible that [Carl] would always be within her eye line or wouldn’t he, like most boys, try to give mom the slip and go out there and get in trouble? That feels plausible to me. If it means that she’s a horrible parent, or Rick’s a horrible parent, well, it feels real to me,” he said, saying he doesn’t know what else to do to please fans. “We’re trying to tell interesting stories here, you know.”

Excited for Michonne? Even more so now that you’ve heard from Gurira? Fed up with Lori? Let us know in the comments!

(via The Hollywood Reporter, ScreenRant)

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Jill Pantozzi
Jill Pantozzi is a pop-culture journalist and host who writes about all things nerdy and beyond! She’s Editor in Chief of the geek girl culture site The Mary Sue (Abrams Media Network), and hosts her own blog “Has Boobs, Reads Comics” (TheNerdyBird.com). She co-hosts the Crazy Sexy Geeks podcast along with superhero historian Alan Kistler, contributed to a book of essays titled “Chicks Read Comics,” (Mad Norwegian Press) and had her first comic book story in the IDW anthology, “Womanthology.” In 2012, she was featured on National Geographic’s "Comic Store Heroes," a documentary on the lives of comic book fans and the following year she was one of many Batman fans profiled in the documentary, "Legends of the Knight."