The Walking Dead: Michael E. Satrazemis reflects on “The Grove”

Lizzie (Brighton Sharbino), Carol (Melissa Suzanne McBride) and Walker - The Walking Dead _ Season 4, Episode 14 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC
Lizzie (Brighton Sharbino), Carol (Melissa Suzanne McBride) and Walker - The Walking Dead _ Season 4, Episode 14 - Photo Credit: Gene Page/AMC /

The Walking Dead director reflected on his experience bringing “The Grove” to life.

Undead Walking had a chance to speak with The Walking Dead director and Fear the Walking Dead executive producer Michael E. Satrazemis about his experience bringing one of the most iconic episodes of The Walking Dead to life.

Members of the Undead Walking team, including Sara Large, Dawn Glen and Sarabeth Pollock (who left briefly due to a power outage) spoke with Satrazemis during a Zoom call. Courtney from AMC also joined in the fun.

“The Grove” has become one of the most celebrated episodes of The Walking Dead thanks in large part to Melissa McBride’s awe-inspiring performance, as well as those of Chad L Coleman, Kyla Kennedy and Brighton Sharbino. It is also the episode that made the expression “Look at the flowers” famous.

The interview features fascinating insight into what it took to bring “The Grove” to life. One of the biggest challenges, of course, was filming such an intense episode using child actors. Satrazemis heaped praise upon Kennedy and Sharbino, talking about their maturity and professionalism in what became a pivotal episode for the series.

Satrazemis discusses how he framed the shot when Carol shoots Lizzie. Not only was it an emotionally charged scene, but there were several other considerations into how it could be filmed so that it passed television censors.

While the show was known by that point for some gory scenes, there was no way a child being shot would pass muster. Not only would it have been impossible to show such a scene, but focusing on the gore would have detracted from the power of the moment itself.

Though Satrazemis had been involved with The Walking Dead from the very start of the show, “The Grove” was his first time directing. Fast forward to 2020 and he has directed dozens of episodes between TWD and Fear the Walking Dead, and he will no doubt go behind the camera for World Beyond, too.

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We want to thank Michael E. Satrazemis for taking the time to talk with us, and we hope to speak with him again about the other episodes he directed in The Walking Dead Universe.