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Lauren Cohan Online
EST 2012 | your ultimate source for all things Lauren Cohan

The ‘Walking Dead’ actress opens up about season seven’s “heartbreaking” finale, her last “death dinner” with Steven Yeun—and what women know about surviving the apocalypse.

 

If you think the real world has gone to hell, we invite you to take a tour of the world as depicted in television’s favorite zombie apocalypse. The seventh season of AMC’s The Walking Dead has been grim—and that’s saying something for a world where hordes of the undead are basically set dressing. Chalk it up to the addition of the show’s biggest, baddest Big Bad ever: the sinister survivor Negan, played by a gleefully sadistic Jeffrey Dean Morgan. Negan puts a fine point on an oft-central question of the series—one we’ve asked ourselves, oh, a couple of times since novelist Mary Shelley first conjured up Frankenstein: “So who’s the real monster here, anyway?” The answer he poses with relentless, cavalier brutality isn’t “us, but…” or “us, if….” It’s a grinning, “us, duh.”

 

But Lauren Cohan doesn’t view things that way. The actress has a skill for seeing the sunny side, even if she has to squint. On a cloudy day up in the Santa Monica Mountains, where Cohan is being photographed for BAZAAR.com, she’s the picture of placid poise in a gold and black Louis Vuitton dress. “I’m in the mind of another version of myself, which can be very steadying,” she says of wearing the shoot’s playfully sculptural outfits. This idea of steadiness is a quality Cohan tries to actualize in her character, Maggie. If the Southern farm girl-turned-fighter Cohan plays on The Walking Dead has remained a figure of stability since she first appeared in the show’s second season, it’s because Cohan sees Maggie as the eye in a storm. As the show’s survivors run from place to place, beating back threat after escalating threat, Maggie has become a touchstone for humanity and pragmatism in an increasingly ruthless narrative.

 

The ability to project such reliability comes from Cohan’s own itinerant childhood—the now 35-year-old was born in New Jersey, spent a year in Georgia, returned to New Jersey, then moved with her family to the UK as a teenager. The English accent stuck, and so did an aptitude for laying down roots in new soil. “It’s interesting for me to play to a hopeful feeling in the middle of tragedy,” says Cohan. More than perhaps any other character in the series, Maggie has seen tragedy not at the hands of flesh-eating zombies, but of flesh-and-blood humans. A recap, not for the faint of heart: her father is decapitated by the power-mad “Governor” of another group of survivors; her younger sister is accidentally shot dead by yet another wannabe despot; and her husband Glenn (played by fan favorite Steven Yeun) had his skull treated like silly putty by a baseball bat-wielding Negan in this season’s gruesome and controversial premiere. So what was that about hope?

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In a very special feature to So It Goes online, Issue 5 alum, Norman Reedus talks to Walking Dead friend, co-star and zombie apocalypse survivor Lauren Cohan, a.k.a, Maggie Greene.

Shot by So It Goes creative director, James Wright, and contributing photographer Toby Knott.

If you’ve somehow managed to thus far steer clear of new season spoilers, then proceed with caution…

 

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NORMAN REEDUS: How did you first feel reading the script for the season premiere? Was it quite a shock, after the biggest cliffhanger to date, or were you aware at the end of the last season what was going to happen?

 

LAUREN COHAN: I was, I think we all were at probably episode of 9 of last year. You don’t get more used to losing people. I think we are still trying to…

 

NR: Yeah, I’ll never get used to it. What is the impact of losing Glenn (Steven Yeun) your co-star, whom you’ve worked with so closely from the beginning?

 

LC: It hit the hardest when we go through a moment on or off the show all together, but without some of our friends…when you have big moments and you want to celebrate, that is when I feel it the most. And when I see all the tribute videos fans make online.

 

NR: Do you think – to some degree – that shows nowadays, in a similar vein to Game of Thrones, need that air of unpredictability to retain viewers?

 

LC: I think it’s more the attachment to the people that keeps people invested but I’d be lying if I didn’t also say it was the shock factor.

 

NR: I hate that it’s like Survivor.

 

LC: Like American Idol with zombies…
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SPOILER ALERT: Read on only if you have watched Sunday’s episode of The Walking Dead, “Go Getters.”

 

“This is our home now, so you’ll have to call me by name. Not Marsha. Not dear. Not honey. Maggie. Maggie Rhee.”

 

BOOM! Delivered after serving Gregory a fist to the face, those words not only reestablished Maggie as a fighter, but as a leader as well — and the potential future head of her new community.

 

Sunday’s episode of The Walking Dead brought us to the Hilltop, where Maggie and Sasha grieved for their murdered men, defended the community from a nighttime zombie assault, and put the duplicitous current leader of their new home on serious notice. We spoke to Lauren Cohan to get her insight into this pivotal episode, as well as Maggie’s verbal and physical beatdown of her new nemesis.

 

ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY: I want to start right at the beginning of the episode, and ask what it was like for you to have that scene at the graves where we see you first approach Glenn’s grave and you leave the pocket watch there. What was it like — after filming that brutal premiere — to have to get yourself into that terrible state of mind all over again?

 

LAUREN COHAN: Yeah, it was pretty intense obviously coming from that episode, and then the change til now knowing that she had been unconscious. Maggie’s been out of it for a while, and coming to terms and coming to consciousness with what happened and wondering, “Is the baby okay?” Sasha’s been with her, but just waking up not knowing where she is and remembering everything that had happened, she is just trying to preserve some equilibrium for the baby and for her physical health. I think that that’s a lot of what happened, and then it’s how much Maggie’s really letting herself feel and remember and relive it. There’s a lot going on there.

 

We then have this scene a little bit later where the Saviors have unleashed zombies into the Hilltop, and Maggie jumps up on the roof, starts giving instructions, and then gets down into the tractor to run over the car blaring the music. First off, did you get to drive the tractor at all?

 

Yeah, how fun was that?!
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The Walking Dead star dishes on her go-to workouts, best self-care practices, and more in Health’s December issue.

 

Lauren Cohan knows what it takes to live her healthiest life.

 

“The best way for me to put it is that if my spiritual life isn’t bigger than my real life, then I’m out of balance,” The Walking Dead star, 34, explains to Health in our December issue, on newsstands this Friday.

 

Cohan has learned how important it is to carve out enough time for the things that enable her to feel this sense of balance. But it hasn’t always been easy: “I think what happened [in the past] was I didn’t have a very good balance with exercise and food,” the actress says. “I’d be stressed out and I’d eat too much, or I’d be stressed out and I’d stop exercising. The last few years, I’ve been focusing on consistency and balance, and it’s made a huge difference.”

 

One of her strategies? Scheduling dedicated blocks of “me” time into the day. “I have timers on my phone for everything: It’s time to meditate, it’s time to do this.”

 

Regular exercise also helps Cohan feel like her best self. She told us she works with a personal trainer to do core-based alignment workouts and strength training three to four days a week, as well as yoga on weekends. She also allows herself one “rest” day during the week—but still makes a point to walk at least 20,000 steps during that day off.

 

The actress explains that when it comes to her well-being, mental positivity is as important as her rigorous fitness routine.

 

“Somebody said to me the other day, ‘If this moment isn’t the best moment of your life, you’re doing something wrong.’ And I think about that all the time,” Cohan tells Health. “Because not liking where I’m at is such a waste of energy. And being able to be there for others is only coming from self-acceptance. You have to do what makes you feel good, but for me it has to come from that spiritual side first.”

 

And while Cohan is diligent about practicing self-care, she believes a person’s healthy habits can have an even bigger impact on others.

 

“I’m taking the time to be a better person so I can be of service—putting other people before myself.”



When she’s not fighting zombies on The Walking Dead, Lauren Cohan keeps her head on with killer core workouts, meditation retreats, and a tech trick for staying balanced.

 

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The Walking Dead’s Lauren Cohan may star in one of the goriest shows on television, but in real life, she can’t stomach the sight of her own blood.

 

“Giving blood, or being near a needle, is the absolute worst,” she says, wrapping her hands around a mug of half-decaf coffee in a restaurant near Central Park in New York City. “At one recent physical, I thought, ‘I’ll just look so I know what’s happening, and it won’t be bad’—and I fainted. The fake stuff? No problem. Just don’t enter my skin.”

 

The fake stuff, of course, has been ubiquitous on The Walking Dead—the gritty AMC hit series about a zombie apocalypse—since the show’s debut in 2010. Lauren plays Maggie, a farmer’s daughter turned zombie butt kicker, a role that’s as emotional as it is physical. With the series now in its seventh season, we sat down with Lauren, 34, to talk about keeping in shape for the role, crying during workouts and, of course, killing zombies.

 

Lauren's wearing (top photo): Fleur du Mal bodysuit ($350; net-a-porter.com) and Elie Tahari blazer ($478; neimanmarcus.com). Above: Manfredonia dress (manfredonia.us).

Lauren’s wearing (top photo): Fleur du Mal bodysuit ($350; net-a-porter.com) and Elie Tahari blazer ($478; neimanmarcus.com). Above: Manfredonia dress (manfredonia.us).

 

Your show is filmed in Georgia, so what’s the best part of working outside of the Hollywood bubble?

 

We’re an hour south of the city [Atlanta]. I’ve learned the power of deep connection—the people, the material, and the story. The most fun part is that it’s family. I am so close with everyone, and we’ve had the same core group of people together for so many years. And now we have a generation of Walking Dead babies. We have game nights, we cook together, we eat together.

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As The Walking Dead season 6 comes out on Blu-ray and DVD, we chatted to Lauren Cohan about Maggie, survival and losing people…

 

Warning: contains spoilers for The Walking Dead season 6.

 

Through some choice genre roles in the likes of Supernatural, Chuck, The Vampire Diaries and Archer, Lauren Cohan has cemented herself as a geek icon, but it’s her long-standing role as Maggie Greene on The Walking Dead that’s allowed her to really shine. Maggie’s journey has seen her suffer extreme loss, with her once rather large family cut down to err… zero, but she’s also been the only character to sustain a long term relationship with Mr Glenn Rhee and out of that love, there’s now the possibility of the show’s second baby on the way.

 

Of course like most of the core characters, both Glenn and Maggie are in the line of bat, but arguably these two have the most to lose – one either loses his wife and unborn child, while the other stands to lose her husband and the father of said child.

 

One thing that hasn’t faltered is Maggie’s sheer force of will and her ability to kick both living and undead ass seven ways from sundown, so it was our great pleasure to chat to Lauren Cohan about all things Walking Dead, with a little Chuck at the end because, if you haven’t had the pleasure yet, it’s one of the greatest shows of all time.

 

So without further ado…

 

Firstly, I just wanted to say congratulations on five seasons of fantastic work, your debut must seem like a lifetime ago now?

 

Yeah isn’t it funny… it sometimes feels like it’s just happened. I actually just remember thinking about something I did last year, where I was on a balcony and I was shouting and it reminded me of my first scene in Walking Dead where I see Rick running with Carl and I shout “Dad!” and I thought ‘Maggie shouts people’s names a lot in this show!’ [laughs] Read the rest of this entry »









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ET – Lucille was swung, the credits rolled, and the dust is far from settled on The Walking Dead.

 

Nearly two weeks have passed since the AMC hit wrapped up season six with a massive cliffhanger, leaving viewers to obsess over who was on the receiving end of Negan’s murderous bat attack for the next six months, and fans are still pretty peeved with the creative decision to offer up no resolution. Such a negative reaction may have lesser shows concerned over whether their audience will abandon them out of frustration, but this is the No. 1 show on cable we’re talking about here. And star Lauren Cohan thinks the reaction from fans is all part of the viewing process.

 

“I think the reaction is almost in keeping with the emotional peaks and troughs that the show takes us through. I’m really glad that the show is coming back with information. It’s not like people are being left hanging and it’s the end of the series or anything,” the actress told E! News. “So, I would say it’s really a testament to people’s dedication, but I feel like this is going to be the longest six months. I really do feel the pain of it.”

 

As Cohan sees it, this sort of agony is what we come to the AMC hit looking for. “It’s brutal. It’s so brutal. But this is a brutal show. I feel like we’re all kind of communally addicted to the stress experience that we have watching the show and then the release of seeing people make it out of situations,” she added. “So, we’ll definitely be having a big resolution when we come back, right off the bat, so that should be of some relief to people. But I know how painful the cliffhanger is.”

 

And as for what’s coming next—and who won’t be back—Cohan would only admit that the cast has “some idea” of what’s in store. “But we also don’t have any black and white clarity for ourselves,” she added.

 

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