The Walking Dead, Season 7: KHARY PAYTON / Ezekiel

The Walking Dead, Season 7: KHARY PAYTON / Ezekiel

Were You a Fan of The Walking Dead Before Being Cast on the Show?
This is one of the shows that my wife and I stay current on. My wife is kind of crazy right now because she wants to know things, but doesn’t want to know things. 

Tell Us About the Audition Process.
The audition was five pages long of me talking! It was one of the more substantial auditions I’ve ever done. I immediately called my agent and manager to find out if I was in the mix for this. Because if I’m not, let me just find a tiny island to go to for a little while so I can get my mind off of it.

Tell Us About Waiting To Hear if You Got the Part of Ezekiel.
It was about 3 to 4 weeks waiting to find out. I felt like a guy in a skiing championship. They have all these championship skiers and this one scrub who is okay. Let’s have him try out and go first, and he broke the record. You go sit in the clubhouse while we see how these other guys do. I just had to wait to see if any of the other guys were going to go faster than me. They said nobody went faster than you – you get the dreadlocks.

How Much Fun Are You Having Bringing Ezekiel to Life?
It’s like somebody asked me what exactly would you like. I’m just going to check off a list of all of these things. Would you like to be introduced as a badass? Yes, I would. Would you like a large tiger that will do whatever you want? Yes, I would. Would you like to be introduced on the biggest television show in the world? It’s stupid what is happening to me. This doesn’t happen to everybody and this doesn’t happen every day. I don’t ever want to forget that.

What Is It Like Working With Lennie James?
It’s such a cool thing to work with Lennie James on this show. Andy [Andrew Lincoln] waking up in that hospital, you’re hooked from the very beginning. To have that secondary story happening with Morgan and his wife and his son made me feel like I have to watch every bit of this because it is such great work. That is the character and that is the guy I’m working with.

Series information