Scott Wilson

This is big news for The Walking Dead fans. The critically acclaimed AMC series has just cast two hugely popular characters from the graphic novels on which the show is based.

Early into the new season, which returns in October just in time for Halloween, Rick Grimes and our brave band of survivors will encounter a farming family that has been ravaged by zombies. Scott Wilson (In Cold Blood, Monster, Junebug) will play Hershel Greene. "He is the patriarch of the family," says executive producer Gale Anne Hurd. "He's a veterinarian with a great sense of humanity and a very unique take on the Walkers." Expect Hershel to endure great heartache as "not everyone in his family survives." Scott was chosen, says Hurd, because of his "tremendous scope and gravitas."

Farmer's daughter Maggie is among Hershel's fortunate few children who survive the zombie plague. "She's in her twenties and is a survivor who ends up as a romantic interest for Glenn (Steven Yuen)," says Hurd. With sci-fi vet Lauren Cohan (Supernatural, Vampire Diaries, and Chuck) cast in the role, Hurd says "Steven's very excited!"

Scott and Lauren join previously announced addition Pruitt Taylor Vince (Deadwood, The Mentalist) as the Greene's ranch hand, Otis.

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