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Nothing is guaranteed in the post-apocalypse, especially not survival. And nothing is guaranteed on post-apocalyptic TV shows, especially not an actor's time on the show, despite the belief that he or she was going to be there for the entirety of the run. Such was the case with Laurie Holden, whose loyalty-jumping Andrea met her surprising end in Season 3. According to the actress, she was fully under the impression that her time on The Walking Dead was going to surpass many others.
Well I had an 8 year deal, I was supposed to be there until the end. I was supposed to end up with Rick. I was supposed to save Woodbury on a horse, and I was buying a house in Atlanta. I got the call at 10 o' clock the night before, while I was shooting, from the showrunner who is no longer a part of The Walking Dead, saying that they couldn't write the episode and that he was killing my character. So we all got the script [and] everybody on the set was sobbing. I felt like I got shot. None of it was supposed to happen the way it did.
Everybody's got at least one good story about how one of their jobs ended, and Laurie Holden's tale ranks pretty highly. Not many people get sentenced to death whenever they find out they're getting laid off, and she didn't really have much time to wrap her mind around the next five years of her life getting taken away in one phone call. That's rough.
Holden revealed this tidbit at this weekend's Walker Stalker Convention in New Jersey (via FanFest), in a panel with the similarly gone-too-soon Jeffrey DeMunn, who played moral compass Dale. Both of those deaths occurred during Glen Mazzara's stretch as showrunner, and that was a point during the series that has gotten the most backlash from the cast and crew themselves. I guess if last-minute kill-offs are the kind of thing that serves as his legacy there, not a lot of kind words would be expected.
No one can blame Laurie Holden for thinking that she was going to be around on The Walking Dead for years to come. Three years later, plenty of other change-ups from the comics to the TV show have taken place, but Andrea's death remains one of the biggest switcheroos. She survives well past that point in the narrative on the page - is still surviving, actually - and had a bunch of other interesting arcs that ended up getting shifted to other characters. Such as Rick and Andrea's romance, which has now incorporated Michonne into the bedroom. Looking back, though, can you imagine Andrew Lincoln and Laurie Holden getting all suck-face on a weekly basis?
Better Rick than the Governor, I guess. In any case, we're still waiting to figure out who the latest victim (or victims) will be when The Walking Dead returns for Season 7 this fall. Here's everything we know about Season 7, and check out our fall TV schedule to see what else is premiering later this year.