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The Walking Dead: Another Actress Almost Played Michonne and Another Actually Did!

Published on August 11th, 2020 | Updated on August 17th, 2020 | By FanFest

There is no doubt that the actors on The Walking Dead have solidified the roles of their characters on the show.  I say Andrew Lincoln, you say Rick Grimes. I say Norman Reedus, you say Daryl Dixon.  I say Danai Gurira, you say Michonne. However, each of these actors could have been played by different actors or these actors could have even played different roles on The Walking Dead.  This is especially true for Michonne.  There was a possibility that another actress could have been playing her on the show.

The Walking Dead was a phenomenon like nothing else.  The cable television juggernaut, as soon as the first season was finished, writers and fans began to grab the comic books and speculate on the arrival of certain characters and the actors and actresses who could play them.

Maybe no bigger character in the comics that had not appeared on screen through the first two seasons was Michonne.  Speculation went rampant on who would take on the role.  Almost every significant black female actress in Hollywood had their name dropped for the sword-wielding bad-ass.

The actress whose name that was mentioned the most was none other than Rutina Wesley. Wesley was best-known for her role as Tara on HBO’s Trueblood.  The southern vampire was a fan-favorite on the show and she felt like a great fit to make the jump to The Walking Dead.


The show’s creator, Robert Kirkman, was asked about Wesley and but it sounded like her availability conflicted with her ability to take on the role, “It was a lot of actresses. The True Blood actress, I don’t know that she was even available; I think she’s still on True Blood,” said Kirkman.

When asked why Gurira ultimately was awarded the part, Kirkman said to THR, “Danai really portrayed the power and strength that we need Michonne to exhibit. Michonne is a very complex character who’s dealing with a lot of things and has a very intricate personality. There’s a lot to that role, and Danai, more than any other actress, showed us that she could exhibit that strength and show what an intense character she could be and, at the same time, have that emotional core and be able to show a vulnerability to a certain extent that we don’t see much of but is definitely there. She really was the whole package, and I think she’s going to do a really good job.”

However, once freed up from Trueblood, Wesley did finally make her way to The Walking Dead.  Welsey appeared in the Season 9 episode, “Scars.” She portrayed the character, Jocelyn, who, ironically, was one of Michonne’s old friends.  Her character led a group of children who scavenged to stay alive and also kidnapped other children in order to do it. These children included Judith and R.J.  Ultimately, Michonne was able to get her kids back and killed Jocelyn.


When asked by PBS why Gurira loved the character, she said, “She felt like a woman of war,” explains the actress, comparing Michonne to “women in Liberian war, [who] turn themselves into their own weapon, into their own army, and find a whole different kind of strength in themselves, as a result.”

There is no doubt that there is no one else for the part for Michonne than Danai Gurira.  Unfortunately, she and the character departed the show in Season 10.  However, it is rumored that she is set to return for The Walking Dead feature films that will focus on the whereabouts of Rick Grimes and what he’s been doing.

But here’s the best bit of trivia yet! One other actress actually did play Michonne on The Walking Dead before Danai Gurira.  Gurira had not yet been hired to play the part yet.  So at the end of Season Two, when they do the reveal of Michonne and tease that she’s coming for Season Three, another actress had to stand in for the part.  Who is it? That’s the million dollar question!


What do you think of the potential for anyone else in the role of Michonne? We certainly couldn’t imagine anyone else!

Let us know your thoughts below!






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