David Morrissey: From The U.K. To The Walking Dead


The Governor was not a very well-liked character on The Walking Dead.  Much of that can be attributed to the great acting skills of David Morrissey.

Morrissey is no stranger to acting.  In fact, his acting credits go all the back to 1983 when he landed a role on the TV miniseries “One Summer”.  Since then, we’ve seen him on hit shows like Doctor Who, The Walking Dead, and most recently, the CBS drama Extant.

Extant offers a very different challenge to David Morrissey than The Walking Dead did.  The methods of creating the great visual effects on the two programs very differently according to an article on the Express.co.uk website where they spoke with Morrissey:

"“The guys that play the walkers, the zombies, they’re right there. There’s very little CGI in that show, it’s all about great make-up and what those actors bring to it. So there’s less green screen and post-production whereas on this there was quite a lot. So I’m very excited to see [Extant].”"

The Governor, The Walking Dead - AMC
The Governor, The Walking Dead – AMC /

Differences in filming technique weren’t the only challenges facing David Morrissey when tackling projects.  Transitioning from an actor in the U.K. to being recognized in the United States presented an obstacle that many stars can’t overcome.

Yet, I learned of him when I saw him on an episode of Doctor Who in 2008.  He played a man who thought he was the doctor until he encountered the actual Doctor himself.  The mass appeal of Doctor Who helped David Morrissey cross over into America.

"“I’d never in my life, as an actor in the UK, been offered the idea of playing a Southern governor in Georgia in a show that was set in the zombie apocalypse. I’d just not been offered that in the UK.”"

The Walking Dead doesn’t shy away from casting actors and actresses from outside the United States.  Andrew Lincoln, Lennie James, and Lauren Cohan are also great examples of talent that was able to  conceal their accents to play Americans on The Walking Dead.

"“So it’s about the scale and testing yourself as an actor. It’s about another palette that you have. I love British television, it’s my lifeblood and I owe everything, so I never want my positive words of American television to be construed as a negative side of British television.”"

Extant can be seen Wednesdays at 10 pm/9 Central on CBS.  You can also see David Morrissey in the upcoming film “The Ones Below” about two couples in an apartment building who are both expecting children, but there is an unnerving difference between the two families.

Plus, you never know when The Governor will pop up on The Walking Dead.  Sometimes, it happens at the most unexpected of times.

Next: Walking Dead 50 most shocking moments and deaths

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