The second season premiere of AMC’s The Walking Dead this coming October 16th, is arguably one of the most anticipated moments on television this fall season. I know you’re hungry for more zombie-action so dab those drooly chins of yours, SciFi Mafia has got the hook-up for you! We’ve got an exclusive interview with actor, Neil Brown, Jr. (Battle Los Angeles, Fast & Furious) who guest starred as Guillermo in season one and again in season two’s premiere episode, “Miles Behind Us.” Check out our conversation below as we ask Brown about how the change in showrunner will affect the show, the details on his role in the season premiere and who dies in season two!
[Above: Anthony Guajardo, Norman Reedus, and Neil Brown, Jr. on set of The Walking Dead]
SciFi Mafia: Let’s just first address the showrunner change for The Walking Dead…
Neil Brown, Jr.: There was a showrunner change? Whatever do you speak of? [sarcastically]
SFM: Glen Mazarra, who was in the writer/ executive producer capacity during season one, is now stepping into the showrunner’s shoes, succeeding Frank Darabont. What are your thoughts on this and how is it going to change the show?
Neil Brown, Jr.: I can’t say if it will change the show or not. If it does, hopefully it will change for the better because Frank helped [the show] find a voice and find a narrative thread that Robert Kirkman had already put out with the graphic novels. Frank just kinda made it all awesome, you know, along with Robert. It’s unfortunate you know… Frank Darabont had all that passion and that’s why he made it so awesome and you lose that… it’s a cut or a wound and just hope that AMC are good doctors and they sew it up quick.
SFM: I sure hope so. It takes a strong hand and a person with vision to lead a show and be the showrunner. I’m hoping that Glen can step up to the plate and carry the show.
Neil Brown, Jr.: Yeah, I mean just follow the blueprint that Frank Darabont laid out and you should be ok. Listen to the fans – that’s one thing that Frank did – and respond in kind. That’s the most important thing. Pay attention to what fans like about the series, the TV series as well as the books, and stick to that. That’s the thing about being the showrunner. [The showrunner] has to be the captain of the ship.
[Above: Walkers from season two]
SFM: So what can you tell us about the season premiere? IMDB has listed you as returning for this premiere episode, “Miles Behind Us.”
Neil Brown, Jr.: It wha?
Neil Brown, Jr.: That IMDB is such a whore. Somebody aught to slap that heifer in her mouth. I tell you what. Knock the tongue right outta her. We got some cow tongue and some tripe. That’s delicious.
SFM: Ugh! [laughing]
Neil Brown, Jr.: The internet is a crazy thing. I can say that some people will be happily surprised and some people won’t. I know what IMDB says, but I’ll say that things on the internet are versions of the truth.
SFM: Well, we can tell from the Comic-Con promo that we do go back to what looks like the courtyard outside where you guys reside in the “Vatos” episode.
Neil Brown, Jr.: Wha? That’s what that was?
SFM: Dude, I even paused it to see if I saw it right.
Neil Brown, Jr.: See? This is the access that people have with the internet. There’s no surprises anymore. I thought it was a double for the place. [laughs]
SFM: It sure looks like it from the split second you can see of it.
Neil Brown, Jr.: With the red bricks and stuff? Yeah, I know what you’re talking about.
[Above: Still from season two promo. Below: Still from season one’s “Vatos”]
SFM: Maybe it’s a very similar building ruin. [laughs]
Neil Brown, Jr.: I think it would be awesome if they go back there and find what they find or what they don’t find.
SFM: And in the promo, it also looks like somebody has died.
Neil Brown, Jr.: Yeah, people die on that show.
SFM: [busts out into laughter]
Neil Brown, Jr.: … on The Walking Dead. And the funniest thing is that it full of dead people!
SFM: I can’t tell who it is, but I don’t think it’s you, which I’m happy about.
Neil Brown, Jr.: I know what you’re talking about and I’ll tell you this: that is not me.
SFM: Good. I’m glad. Cuz I was like, that don’t look like you.
Neil Brown, Jr.: That is not me. Not I. [laughs] And it’s not Guillermo’s twin brother either.
Neil Brown, Jr.: I chat up my people on the phone or text. I saw them at Comic Con. It’s great seeing them. Love those guys.
You gotta understand that on a show like The Walking Dead, there’s a lot of room that they create for themselves. Sometimes it’s a big area and sometimes it’s really narrow. The scope is so large that you gotta understand that characters come and go.
SFM: Are you hinting that the person who is dead or at least unconscious in the courtyard might be major character or maybe someone that we have seen but is not with the group any longer?
Neil Brown, Jr.: Oh, no. I didn’t say that.
Neil Brown, Jr.: That’s a good jawline there. Yeah, I was impressed by his death… his lying there. It was crazy. Regardless, the show is going to be awesome.
[Above: Still from season two]
SFM: Cool. And did you get to work with Lauren Cohan (Chuck, The Vampire Diaries), who plays Maggie Greene in this second premiere episode of The Walking Dead? Or is she in a different part of the episode’s plotline?
Neil Brown, Jr.: I never worked with her. We’d be on set, but I never worked with her. I think she’s awesome.
SFM: So what is next for you? I know that you will be guest starring on the season finale of USA’s Suits starring Gabriel Macht and Gina Torres. The show has just been renewed for a second season.
Neil Brown, Jr.: Yes, I am and it’s so awesome to be on a show that’s filming the night they find out they’re going to be renewed for a second season.
SFM: This finale episode is pivotal to Harvey Specter’s (Gabriel Macht) plotline. What can you tell us about “Dog Fight”?
Neil Brown, Jr.: It’s the season finale and it centers on Harvey trying to right a wrong. My character, Clifford Danner, has been in jail for twelve years since he was a kid, wrongfully accused. It brings in Chi McBride, the new District Attorney, and he battles to keep my ass in jail.
Many thanks to Neil Brown, Jr. for taking the time to chat with us about The Walking Dead season two! Make sure you mark your calendars for October 16th for the second season premiere of AMC’s The Walking Dead and not to miss the season finale of USA’s Suits this coming Thursday, September 8, 2011 at 10/9C.
The Walking Dead: Season Two Promo
Suits Promo for “Dog Fight,” guest starring Neil Brown, Jr. this Thursday
Are you ready for the zombie apocalypse? Join up with the Zombie Survival Crew!
The Walking Dead ninety-minute season two premiere airs on Sunday, October 16, 2011 at 9/8c on AMC.