The Walking Dead: Season 5 and The Return of Rick Grimes

Fans around the world are anxiously awaiting Season 5 and the return of “Rick Grimes” from the hit show “The Walking Dead.”

Many of us know the name Andrew Lincoln, but does the name Andrew James Clutterbuck, (born, September 14, 1973) Lincoln’s real name, ring a bell, probably not?

Lincoln first drew attention playing the role of “Egg,” in the BBC drama “This Life.” And he went on to gain even more notoriety when he played role of “Mark” in the romantic comedy, “Love Actually,” but we all know and love him best in the role of “Rick Grimes” in the AMC/Fox International drama series “The Walking Dead.”

I recently had time to sit down with Mr. Lincoln and discuss the “Walking Dead” while at the fifth annual Fox International Channels Press Breakfast.

Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes
Andrew Lincoln as Rick Grimes in The Walking Dead

Andrew Lincoln: Let’s go.

AL: We’re used to sweat, what are you talking about? This is what we do.

RD: I imagine you must be used to the heat by now; the American south is infamous for heat in the summer especially the Georgia area where you guys film.

AL: It’s the main ingredient of the job.

RD: That’s what the buzz has been, the elements the cast and crew deal with. It’s awesome to talk to you!

AL: Yeah come on.

RD: We have everyone this time around.

AL: Yeah.

RD: Emily, Chandler.

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AL: Yeah I know it’s amazing. It’s so sweet. We’ve been waiting for this as well to get as many of the family as possible.

RD: So you’ve been here before, this is your fifth Fox International Channels Press Breakfast.

AL: It is.

RD: A lot of International Press in here.

AL: Yeah.

RD: Things are a lot different. Season one you guys were in a windowless room in a hotel. Now a super vamped up Fox event.

AL: Just in case we weren’t aware.

RD: Yeah, just to let everyone know what network you’re on internationally.

AL: Yeah, yeah. It is, well look it’s just the journey that we’ve been on has been astonishing and it’s wonderful always coming back here as well because this is where we sort of got the first indication that we might have got it right, you know for the fans. And I remember a very moving moment when I was outside and they played the first trailer and we heard this sound of approval. And it was – and we just – everyone breathed a sigh of relief because we knew how important it was to these guys to get to this fan base, this incredibly loyal and fervent fan base to get it right. And so yeah this coming back each year is – I love it. It’s a signal. It’s the flag. It gives everybody a shot in the arm, the crew, the cast, everybody and the fans ’cause it’s; you know it’s the beginning of the new season.

AMC TWD Rick Gallery

RD: It’s a great chance for fans to see you guys in action –

AL: Yeah.

RD: Do you like to see the fans’ reaction?

AL: It’s fun. And that’s all it is. I mean the first couple of years I was just struck down with fear because I’d never seen anything like it. And I remember David Morrissey who’s an incredibly talented and experienced actor. And I remember looking down the line at his first Comic-Con and he was just gob-smacked and I went, “That’s exactly how I felt,” you know. And I still do. I mean I get nervous but it’s a wonderful thing because it’s just about a conversation between, direct conversations between who we make the show for and actually it’s their show now. It’s not our show anymore. We’ve got a responsibility to this fan base.

RD: You guys took care of the fans this year the whole frickin cast is here this year.

AL: It’s great.

RD: Love it!

AL: You know what I’m so excited about? My boy’s here.

RD: Your family from England is here?

AL: No it’s Chandler Riggs. I’ve got a – you know he’s 15 years old.

RD: I can’t wait to talk to him. So do you look after him at Comic Con too?

AL: Hardly; he looks after me. He’s the most responsible one out of all of us. He’s amazing. He’s wise beyond his years and he’s an incredibly sweet and talented young man. You know and it’s been one of the great privileges in my career to watch this actor grow on the screen.

RD: The progression of his character from season one has been incredible.

AL: Yeah I mean he was about the size of his action figure in season one and now he’s like got a deeper voice than me and more hair than Steven Yeun.

RD: He has got some hair now.

AL: More facial hair than Steven Yeun, yeah.

burning walking dead
Burning walking dead

RD: So we have a trailer to watch today…

AL: Yeah.

AL: Have you seen it?

RD: I’ve watched it a bunch of times.

AL: Cool.

RD: It’s awesome, action packed. You went all primal last season.

AL: Yeah.

RD: Ripping throats out with your teeth.

AL: Well yeah I called up Scott about that one. We sure we’re not overstepping the market? But actually when we did the scene it was amazing because I kind of, every parent knows that feeling if they saw their child in distress, their life threatened, what would you do? What would you do? And that’s what Rick would do.

RD: Any father would have done the same.

AL: That’s all he had you know? I mean part of me is just, is astonished because the reason why that scene works is because of the scene afterwards, is because the scene with Daryl and Rick and the reunion and saying that it was worth going through that to get you back with the group. And I think that that’s the beauty of the scripts that we’re getting at the moment are just magnificent, is that you can push the boundaries of you know, of intensity and brutality as long as it’s offset with this humanity.

RD: That scene from the season 4 finale was so intense!

The Walking Dead Poster for Season 5
The Walking Dead Poster

AL: Well you know I think a lot of this season just from my perspective is about Rick you know if you stand alongside Rick you’re one of the family. If you stand in front of him then you’re a problem. And I think a lot of that is gonna be how you stand in relation to Rick. You know a lot of the conflicts and a lot of the challenges within the group and outside of the group.

RD: I am pretty excited about season five.

AL: It’s badass.

RD: Can you give a shout out to the international press and fans – what do you wanna say?

AL: Fox International ba-boomski, we’re back. Why not? Let’s do another one. More zombies? Yes please. I’ll do my best to stay alive.

RD: There you have it .That’s Andy Lincoln. You’re the best. Thank you.

Editor’s Note:

In Australia, Season 5 premieres Mondays 1.30pm (Express) and 8.30pm (Primetime) on FX.

Russell W. Dickson, lives in upstate NY, and is a Freelance journalist. He has written for both print and online news/opinion pages.Russell holds a B.A. in English, minor Journalism from The University at Albany, Albany, NY. His writing experience spans more than a decade and his work has graced the pages of newspapers, magazines, online news orgs, and political websites in both the U.S. and abroad.