A talk with Sarah Wayne Callies, formerly of 'The Walking Dead' on her International Rescue Committee work, surprise appearance on the show

Sarah Wayne Callies
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Sarah Wayne Callies, as Rick's wife Lori, said farewell to "The Walking Dead" back in November in a dramatic death after giving birth.

But Lori did come back in a sense in episodes 9 and 10.

In that 10th episode, aired Feb. 17, Rick saw Lori in ghost form outside the prison in a wedding dress.

In an interview last week, I spoke with Callies about her work as spoikeswoman for the International Rescue Committee but we also talked "The Walking Dead." The wedding dress was an idea that came from her while talking wtih producers.

"I was saying that Rick wanted to see Lori at her most beautiful, like on her wedding day," she said. "I didn't realize they were going to take me literally!"

It was the first time on the show we ever saw Lori in pre-apocalyptic form, make-up, radiant, angelic.

"The crew didn't recognize me!" she said.

She felt Rick saw her that way because he "needed to believe she was happy."

Callies flew down from a film she was doing in Detroit ("Black Sky") to shoot that and the previous scene in the prison where Rick saw her in shadows, then kicked Tyreese's group out of the prison, a move that may come back and bite him.

She hasn't been actually following the show since she left. She said she's going to wait until the end of the season when they send her all the episodes and just "gorge on it for a weekend." (I presume her use of "gorge" was not deliberate.)

She said despite the loss of two showrunners and virtually everybody who was the screen in the first season, she said there has been admirable continuity in the feel of the show thanks to many of the executive producers such as David Alpert, Gale Anne Hurd and Greg Nicotero. She even namedropped a camera guy Mike Satrazemis  She said the crew was incredible, holding up in adverse conditions, especially seasons one and two. At least during season three, much of the production was done at the soundstage or just outside of one so they were accessible to air conditioning.

Callies recently travelled to Iraq and Jordan to converse with Syrian refugees for the IRC and get a sense what is happening to them. For now, there is no talk of relocating them, say, to the United States, she said. The camps are just huge. The one in northern Iraq held 42,000 people. She sought information, especially from the women, about education programs, gender-based latrines, food rationing and basic needs.

She blogged about her experience here.

Sarah Wayne Callies with Syrian refugees at Domiz camp, Iraq

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