Fans of The Walking Dead, both the comics and the TV show, are at this point very used to losing characters both big and small to everything from zombies to other evil humans or even just the threat of disease in an apocalypse. Next season though they might lose a very big character in an unexpected way.
According to Deadline, Lauren Cohan, who has played farmer turned warrior turned leader Maggie Greene since season two, has become a very sought after name as 2018 pilot season begins. According to reports the reason for this is because Cohan’s contract, along with most of the casts, ends this season and she is seeking equal pay with co-stars Andrew Lincoln and Norman Reedus, but AMC offered just a modest raise which was turned down during the initial negotiation.
Those negotiations with the cast are not over and Cohan entertaining pilot offers does not mean that her time on the show will come to an end. There is always a chance that she and AMC will come to an agreement that is satisfactory to both for the ninth season.
Cohan’s reported demands though highlight once more the great pay disparity that exists through all facets of society but has been very much spotlighted in Hollywood as of late including the recent news that Jodie Whittaker made sure The BBC paid her equally to former Doctor Who actor Peter Capaldi now that she has taken over the main role.
While Cohan joined after both Lincoln and Reedus, somewhere around seven or eight episodes after Lincoln kicked off the series & a little less than Reedus who appeared in the third episode of season one, and has less screen time than the both of them (they both take up the majority of screen time compared to anyone) she has worked her way up to being a character as equally important to the series.
The same could be said for Melissa McBride’s Carol who has been there since season one and went from terrified mother to the biggest badass of the apocalypse alongside the equally badass Michonne played by Danai Gurira who joined in the third season.
There is still time for negotiations to work out for all the show’s cast, those that survive that is, as the second half of season eight doesn’t start airing until February 25 with the already greenlit season nine filming later this year for an October premiere.