The Walking Dead paid actors to do fewer convention appearances says star Michael Cudlitz during the podcast, Inside of You. The revelation confirmed a rumor known to those familiar with the show’s actors doing conventions over the past decade – especially conventions such as Walker Stalker Con.
In a recent interview on the podcast Inside of You with Michael Rosenbaum (you can watch below), Cudlitz revealed that the AMC network actually pays actors more money if they agree to do less conventions. As the actor explained:
“You got a little more each episode to not do X number of conventions…because some people were doing them every weekend and it was interfering with the work schedule. It wasn’t like the top people — Norman [Reedus] wasn’t doing that. His [convention appearances] were spaced out, because they took a lot out of him because he was a huge convention draw. It took a toll on him physically just doing that. But there were some people who were doing quite a bit.”
Conventions are a big source of extra income for actor. For a long time, it was even rumored that some actors associated with The Walking Dead made more per convention appearance than they did per episode. When The Walking Dead was at its peak, the cast were regulars, if not headliners, on the convention circuit. As well, the Walker Stalker Convention was one of the largest conventions outside of San Diego Comic Con and New York Comic Con.
In hindsight, when fans were demanding the appearance of certain actors at conventions such as Walker Stalker, it now gives insight to the fact that the actors may have been limited by their contracts with AMC.
Conventions weren’t a problem at first for The Walking Dead, as in its early seasons, many cast members were not frequently participating. In fact, the show’s biggest star, Norman Reedus, was a regular on the circuit long before The Walking Dead, as Reedus has a massive cult following from Boondock Saints. As the show’s popularity grew, so did their appearances. Reedus (along with Jeffrey Dean Morgan) were in demand and by far had the biggest lines. It was rumored that these actors made hundreds of thousands of dollars per appearance and thus appeared at fewer events. As well, it’s surprising that they even needed to appear at all, given that they probably made plenty from starring on the show. However, it was a blessing to fans that they did and they always seemed to enjoy these appearances.
At the peak, the money from convention appearances as a Walking Dead cast member was lucrative. In fact, it was rumored that the inside joke was getting on the show was like hitting the lottery due to the ability to go out on the circuit. Actors, long after departing the show, were still able to make their living off of conventions, as many of them continued to remain as regulars at Walker Stalker and other conventions such as Wizard World and FanExpo.
What does this revelation really do for future shows and actors? Probably not much. But in hindsight, it’s now very revealing why some actors appeared more than others at conventions. It’s also revealing that some preferred to possibly not appear at all and take a bigger payday from the network.
What are your thoughts on Cudlitz revealing AMC’s contract details with its actors? Let us know in the comments below!
You can watch the interview below!