Interview: Hal Cumpston Reflects on The Development of Silas

Hal Cumpston as Silas – The Walking Dead: World Beyond _ Season 1, Episode 3 – Photo Credit: Macall Polay/AMC

Silas’ journey so far on The Walking Dead World Beyond is sad. Knowing that his father was abusive towards him and his mother really tramutized him. Anyone that suffers from that dark past, I would have sympathy for and I do for Silas. On this exclusive quick interview, Hal Cumpston breaks down the development of Silas on the most recent episode of The Walking Dead World Beyond.

How did you mentally prepare for your flashback scenes before the cameras started rolling?

Hal: I was very excited and ready to go for this episode for a while so there wasn’t too much trouble trying to get into character.

There is one thing that your character and Felix has in common and that is, that their fathers were not great role models to them when they were teenagers and young adults. Have you and Nico Tortorella talked about that behind the scenes?

Hal: We filmed such a long time ago I can’t remember discussing it exactly. We spent 6 months with each other so there isn’t really a topic we didn’t delve into. 

How intense was it for Silas to know that the first walker that he killed, is his father? And will we find out if his mom forgave him?

Hal: Silas is still intensely haunted by his past in particular having to kill his father twice. And I cannot answer the second question for now.

The first season is going to conclude soon. What are your favorite memories being part of World Beyond’s first season?

Hal: My mind is a bit hazy about particular memories from set but it was definitely a lot of fun. I’d say the overall experience that I get to be so lucky to do this as a job is definitely what sticks with me the most. But to give a funny memory there was a hilarious shocker where a cake was arranged for Annet’s “Birthday” yet low and behold it wasn’t her birthday. Another time that was funny was a day on episode 3 where I couldn’t make eye contact with Nicolas Cantu in an emotion scene because Nick, Nico and I had the giggles.

How challenging was it for you at first when you were first introduced into this universe of The Walking Dead?

Hal: I was pretty all over the place emotionally as I didn’t have a point of reference, it being my first US audition. The overall feeling was more of a “I’m so lucky to be here” than being a challenging or daunting experience. I did feel pretty comfortable pretty quickly thankfully. The fact all I had to do was act and I had money for the first time in my life was an easier version of life than the previous years working non-stop for little moneys on my indie film.

If there are any two characters between the main show and Fear The Walking Dead that you would like to see Silas interact with, who would they be?

Hal: Rick and Daryl probably. Sorry boring answer but that’s who realistically would probably be the coolest.

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INTERVIEW: Fear The Walking Dead’s Colby Minifie

Colby Minifie is known for her roles on Marvel’s Jessica Jones, Amazon’s The Boys, Glee, and The Blacklist and now she is the leader of her group of horseback riders named Virginia on Fear The Walking Dead. She has so far wanted to help Morgan’s group and at the same time, had former members of her group go against her. With the season finale coming up for Fear, I got the chance to interview Colby Minifie as we talked about her role on the show and what can we expect from her in the future.

You are now on Fear The Walking Dead as Virginia. How did you react when you got the role?

Colby: I screamed of course. I officially booked it on the last day of an indie movie I was shooting and about 12 hours later I was on a plane to Austin for FEAR. So, yeah, it was a whirlwind, but the best kind of whirlwind. There’s a certain energy that kicks in at moments like that because everything you love is happening at the same time. 

Colby Minifie as Virginia – Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 5, Episode 13 – Photo Credit: Van Redin/AMC

Have you done horseback riding before you got your role, or did you already knew how to ride horses?

Colby: I rode horses as a kid with my cousins. I remember flying off a loping horse once. But I hadn’t been on a horse in over a decade when I had to ride in as Virginia. Boom, my trusty steed, is a total pro so it was a breeze. 

Virginia told Dwight that she knows that his wife is still alive. Will we find out if that is true within the next few episodes?
Colby: That’s super duper secret. 

Will we find out more of how Virginia formed her group?
Colby: That’s also super secret but I’m gonna say yes!

What was it like to work with Lennie James and Karen David on the episode? and why should Morgan and everyone else give Virginia their full trust knowing that she has killed Logan and had some of her members run away from her?

Colby: Lennie was so wonderful. Acting with him made me a better actor in many ways. Some of the scenes we have together were very emotional for me and when I looked in his eyes I always felt safe. I didn’t get to work with Karen very much on this episode but she’s a total sweetheart! And Virginia wants to help as many people as she can. But she’s also a utilitarian, so if a few people have to die for everyone else to survive and thrive, she is willing to make that sacrifice. 

Colby Minifie as Virginia, Beau Smith as Dom – Fear the Walking Dead _ Season 5, Episode 15 – Photo Credit: Van Redin/AMC

Were there any other costume ideas that were discussed before you got the cowgirl costume?

Colby: Not that I know of. Luckily, when Ian and Andrew described the character to me, I pictured something not too far from the final look that Jo Katsaras (Costume Designer) came up with. The pioneer/colonial style has a lot of history to it, which meant I could rely on the look to tell a lot of Virginia’s story. I felt so cool in that outfit. 

Any funny stories working with the cast on this episode (5×14).
Colby: I hadn’t had sugar in 2 months before I did this episode and all of a sudden I was eating jam. It was so delicious and I kept sneaking more finger-fulls throughout the scene so I could have more. And then the sugar high hit and I got giddy. 

We are close to the season finale. Without giving too much away, what can we expect from you on that episode coming up?
Colby: All I can say is it’s gonna be BIG. Virginia is a strong woman and will do anything to get her way.

Fear The Walking Dead airs every Sunday at 9:00 PM EST on AMC.

I will be livetweeting from The Walking Dead panel at New York Comic Con next week. Follow me on Instagram and Twitter @julianexcalibur for more content. Contact me at

Wizard World Philadelphia 2019 Recap

Wizard World Philadelphia is usually their biggest show of the year and it showed during the four day convention. From the cosplay, to the gaming area, the guests, and the gaming area, there is plenty for everyone to do at the show over there at the Pennsylvania Convention Center. This year’s headliners were supposed to be Gotham stars Ben McKenzie and Morena Baccarin, but they cancelled one day before the show begun. You would think that the show would be greatly affected by this, but it was not. I will get to the guests that were there shortly as I begin my recap of Wizard World Philadelphia 2019.

Ted Danson was announced for the show as it was his first ever comic convention appearence. He had a panel in which he and George Wendty talked about Cheers and answered questions to the fans.

So with that out of the way, I covered the show for three of the four days and although the best of the best cosplay did not showed up until late Saturday, I barely seen any at all. I do not know why, but I expected many just like in years past. But the crowd was decent and even for a show. Friday was slower than usual, but the celebrity guest table lines were mostly full. I did not see it empty not once so it is great to see how many people came out to see them. Guests included Lisa Marie Varon, Devon Dudley, Sgt. Slaughter, Kevin Konroy, the cast of RWBY, Once Upon a Time, and much more. There was even a Super Smash Bros. Ultimate tournament that took place during the three days. I did actually qualify for this, but I got eliminated in the qualifying round. Also to note, These three are the best cosplay pictures I have taken during the weekend that I have taken many.

The other panels I have attended were Once Upon a Time and Kevin Conroy and John Glover’s. The Kevin Conroy one was interesting as he finally gave his thoughts of Robert Pattison being casted as Batman. He reacted very positively to the announcement as he wanted everyone to give him a chance since they all gave every other actor a chance. Right below, you can hear it from the man himself in his own words.

The next panel I attended was Once Upon a Time as Lana Parrilla, Rebecca Mader, and Jared Gilmore took the stage to talk about their best memories of the show since the show just finished its final season. Once Upon a Time has a huge fanbase and this panel was packed from the front to the back.
It was very fun to watch live since I have always heard about the show. Lana even worn the Phillies baseball t-shirt at the panel that a fan given her as a gift at her table before the panel begun. You can check out the entire panel below.

My Interviews

Last but not least, I conducted interviews at the show. Kevin Conroy was my first one during the show as we talked about Batman, stories with Mark Hamill, and his future projects. I interviewed WWE Hall of Fame inductee Devon Dudley as we talked about his memories competing in TLC matches, a story about Vince McMahon, his take on the Bully Ray situation at the recent Ring of Honor show, and what would it take to be a road agent at WWE. And my final interview was with Kara Eberle of the hit anime series RWBY as her fun personality shined during this interview as we talked about the series and her recent appearence on Death Battle. You can check these interviews out below.

Photo Credit: Wizard World

Wizard World was fun this year and I know for the sure that the shows will keep getting bigger! I will be back next year for more coverage.

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Split Screen Festival 2019-Fear The Walking Dead Cast Interviews

Photo by Julian Cannon

The Split Screen Festival took place last week at the IFC Center in New York and there were many television show and movie premieres that were shown at the event. Fans got the chance to attend the screenings and see the cast and key people that are part of the show take the stage to talk about them. It was a fun experience for the fans and absolutely great to see this happen.

Of the shows, AMC Network’s Fear The Walking Dead had the biggest prescense of the weekend as fans were awaiting to see the premiere of the fifth season. I attended the red carpet event that took place at the IFC Center and cast members Alycia Debnam Carey, Colman Domingo, Jenna Elfman, Danay Garcia, and Austin Amelio (who crossed over to this show from the main show) were there along with exceutive producer Scott Gimple to take photos and answer questions about the season to the media. I was able to interview Alycia, Austin and Gimple.

Austin Amelio talked about his upcoming story in the fifth season of Fear and we also talked about what would happen if Daryl was to see him again, if we will see Sherry as well, if Negan would kill him if he seen him, and how often he keeps in contact with Jeffrey Dean Morgan.

Alycia was the next person I interviewed as we talked about how much of an influence Madison will be in this season since she is not on the show anymore. I also asked if we were convinced if Madison is dead. She also brings up a good story about Lennie James (Morgan) while they were filming and if she thinks that killing walkers is very theraputic. We also talk about the radaition plot on the second episode of the fifth season as well and when she will cross paths with Dwight.

And finally, I got a chance to speak to Scott Gimple. We talked about the current progression of his and Robert Kirkman’s comic book series Die!Die!Die and how the current season of Fear will connect with the upcoming Rick Grimes films and the main show of The Walking Dead. The biggest piece of news from the interview is that the second spinoff series will begin filming next month so that will be something to look forward to.

Fear The Walking Dead airs on Sunday night at 9:00 pm EST on AMC Network

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Interview: Christopher James Baker Talks Agents of the S.H.I.E.L.D., Stan Lee, His Upcoming Role in Stargirl, and more

Christopher James Baker recently appeared on the latest episode of Marvel’s Agents of the S.H.I.E.L.D as the new villian Malachi. I recently got the chance to interview Christopher as we talked about his appearence on the show along with his time in Ozark along with Stan Lee, his upcoming role on DC’s Stargirl, and New York City in general. The twenty Minute call was a great one and here is the interview below.

So I have watched you play different roles on Ozark and the blacklist and even Garbo. And also, True Detective and now recently, Agents of the S.H.I.E.L.D. My first question to you is that was a hard transition for you to play these different characters?

It’s a good question. And I don’t want to sound flippant. It’s not hard because that’s the work for me like that’s telling you you get a new role and start from the pace up and kind of build it up. Whether it’s about movement quality or you know vocal quality or whether if you know what the story purpose is like all of that stuff is a big part of the craft that I really enjoy. So it is work but it’s very enjoyable work. And by the time you get to the point where you’ve built a new character that’s different in a lot of ways to something you’ve done before. I find that fulfilling to you know when you enjoy seeing that my character was very different to this character those that I’d much prefer to be doing that every time and then doing another version of that guy again if you get what I mean. So yes I it’s work but it’s it’s like I love it. And that’s why I’m in it doing it. I’m kind of always trying to look for something that’s different to anything I’ve done before because it inherently involves a lot of exploration into different parts of yourself or different a different world or different time period that you don’t know about. So it’s kind of like being a religious archaeologist at some point.

When did you get the call that you were going to play as Malachi on the episode?

It was about this time last year. I can’t remember the exact day of the call, but the cool thing about it was that when I did the audition, it was just for a one episode guest. Here’s what I thought I was doing and I was elated like great. This is a great show. It sounds like a really cool character. At that stage, everything in a project like this is so top secret. They’re trying to keep everything under wraps. You actually as the actor not finding out very little about what you’re going to be doing and which is kind of fun and exciting in a way but it really wasn’t until I got there and pretty much just before I read that I met a cast and all the producers and everything. And then you’re reading through and it was that first episode that was just done and I remember finishing the Bible reading and calling my manager and saying oh I just kidnapped one of the main cast. I think they’re going to ask you to come back and get it. So it was kind of I didn’t realize that it was going to turn into to what it was I thought it was just going to be a lot of gastro but yeah. So but it was about a year ago I think and it was very exciting. That’s like stepping into the Marvel Universe which you know I’ve been a kind of comic fan and a movie fan my whole life. So that was there was a limit. Yeah a little bit tingly and kind of giddy and fun stuff like that happens.

Who did you tell first tell that you got the role?

My wife {Laughs} and then my family. At the time, my family’s still over in Australia and so I’m constantly sending them messages that say Guys I’ve got this really exciting news and you seriously can’t tell anyone. Otherwise, I’m going to get my Marvel Police that will come to my house and lock me up so you can be happy for me. But just don’t tell anybody else I’m doing this but it is a double edged sword sometimes.

I’ve heard stories of Stan Lee sometimes going on the set of Marvel’s Agents of the S.H.I.E.L.D.. Have you met or spoken to him before he passed away?

 I’ll just be honest. I think we’re in lunch third or fourth episode. And when we found out I was I remember quite clearly in the makeup like you know you do hair and makeup we’ve performed in the makeup bus and that television on and the news broke that Stan lee had died which you know obviously affected the cast and crew of show immensely. And to your question, the rest of the day and the next day everyone I was chatting with would tell these incredible stories about exactly what you’re talking about that some guy and he just broke up or turn up for a cameo and he’d go out and chat to everyone and you know sign stuff and was just as generous and kind of amazing guy that was loving the world that he’d helped create the universe to help create and I think from from stories from from cars right down to you know set pieces and crew people would just hey just in time for everybody from from what I can tell. Fortunately I never got to meet him. I would have loved to. But yeah I think what a quite an amazing what an amazing amazing contribution to so many people’s lives. If that gentleman made some kind of yeah that was he was an amazing couple of days being on a show that you know he’d been a big part of creating.

What was your first day on the set like?

First day was little nerve wracking even if you had a lot of first days on set with something like this. I mean with Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D., it was made very easy because they’re on Season 6 the most of the cast and crew have been there for six seasons now. They all want it knowing they’re shooting on the studios that they’ve been working on. It’s just a very well oiled machine and there’s no there’s no teething problems. It’s not like working on episode one of a brand new show where everybody’s trying to get to know each other and do their thing. So it was it was like just being into a really welcoming and fun family day. They made this stuff really well. Amazing crew and then all of the other actors are really welcoming and kind of enjoy what the guest cast bringing to their world and how we all kind of play together and it’s really when you on that first day that everything comes together like you’re doing your research and you preparation at home and it’s not until you get in and you get the costume on for the first time and you get things together and then you step into the set and suddenly you’re in a spaceship and then they hand you the props and your things and then you’re looking around and then everybody else turns up and you start when it’s like All right. Yeah well we’re in where it’s space. Sometimes it’s that very first day that you might be really nervous going “Oh my God I don’t know what I’m doing it and how this is going to work what’s going happen”. And then when you get there and finally step into everything and let go of everything, you worried about it it just takes on a whole different form I think. And then, it becomes into that and that becomes the play in the work. And it’s it’s exhilarating it’s nerve racking cause you really really don’t know what you’re doing a lot of the time until you’re actually standing there and then you see how the camera is going to be moving and what other people are doing. Right. Well the place even looks like oh can you tell again now that line makes sense because you’re holding that thing or you know and there’s a lot of you know I spent a lot of that first day going “Okay so what’s happening, why are they here”, Because everyone thinks the end of season five is so much it happened that I wasn’t privy to it because I didn’t get to know what the last couple of script turned out. Yeah there’s a lot of there’s a lot of catch up in it but it was also really fun and exciting because you walk down on those big kind of studio stages in in downtown Culver City. It’s a lot of history there is when I was walking down and someone’s like yeah that’s where they shot the sound of music I think we shot them and you know like there’s a bunch of old. It’s really cool you know on some of those old Hollywood stages that have history under themselves almost like a theater right. There it was. It was an exciting time and it was also a bugler and I know there was a good time. 

Now do you have any stories working with the cast on S.H.I.E.L.D. and also on your time with Ozark?

Oh yes! one with Julia Garner. I do actually use her method of using that one way she’s spinning around on the chair singing to herself and I was standing in the room about 44 when that happened. Just been chatting and then she started doing it. So I just went “Oh my God”.She kind of popped up and cracking up laughing and it was the funniest thing I’ve seen. And it was a lot scarier in the room because everybody of course goes “Oh my God”. And then when we told her that she had been making it look so much worse on the video this looks like she blacked out. Yeah that was crazy stuff like that happened but yeah that was that was about the eyes and watching watching the video of the candidate posting this because she had to get all the permissions and everything she’s like you can sort of make out that we’re on set but you can’t really tell what to do. It’s like I’m in an office. 

You’re also going to start the upcoming Stargirl series for this DC Universe. What can you tell me about the upcoming project?

I’m not saying much but it’s besides what’s happened. I don’t know if you’ve seen the Comics Geoff Johns stuff he did. It’s you know a lot of the story follows that pretty closely. Young young Courtney Whitmore moves to a new high school in a little town gets an advantage because she’s style girls. And there’s the places I have nothing on the other side then but yeah there’s nothing coming. It’s just that I think the most amazing thing about it so far has been that Geoff Johns who created the first comic that he ever did for DC quite a that you sound like you’re knowledgeable about the comic world as well. I think like so you know Jeff John and sort of what he’s done at DC and the characters he’s brought back and like true flash and everything that still go with the first thing he did and he wrote it and made it as what followed was a tribute to his sister. And where did it come. And now sort of come full circle and he’s show running this amazing showing. I think the task that is built and the crew that is built I find that with shows is the person that you know the people at the top and particularly the show runner is if they’re really loose and their intention is in the right place and the team they know they just kind of flows down the pyramid and everyone on this show is really great and it’s just been imbued with this excitement because it’s such a special project for him and personally he’s really going to exceeding in extraordinary lengths to make sure that it’s every shot is exactly right. Not in a bad perfectionist way but in a how can we all make this better so that it’s just everything is kick up and there’s been so many fun moments of just being on the set and watching like it was like when making a huge big 13 episode feature film they’ve got the stunt coordinators and came from like cattle and men and stuff and in doing these incredible stunts and I’m like it’s a proper big superhero do. I haven’t I haven’t thought of that kind of thing. It’s just amazing. And it seems it’s got a really good positive yes. It’s just a good story. 

Any final thoughts before we wrap up the interview?

Just that it’s been pretty amazing to have a foot in both the DC and the Marvel Universe is I just feel blessed that that’s very rare and wonderful thing and I hope the it can continue for as long as possible because I think there’s something about doing these the comic book things. I don’t I feel like they deal with the bigger archetypes and biggest stories that help us work out what’s right and wrong and moral is not that everything has to have a message but it’s definitely fun to work on a big canvas that has lots of fans that are really into it because they can relate to it even though it’s not set in the real world. Oh yeah.

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