Collins, Nisenson, & Evangelista Talk Season 7 of Fear the Walking Dead

Fear the Walking DeadAt the end of last season of Fear the Walking Dead, Sarah (Mo Collins) and Charlie (Alexa Nisenson) both got on a CRM helicopter with the others before the nuclear blast, leading fans to wonder how else crossover elements from the other The Walking Dead series may come into play this season on the show. In a recent roundtable interview with the press, the actresses couldn’t say much, but Nisenson gave a little tease to SciFi Vision. “I think it’s really interesting how we've been able to incorporate it into this universe and into this show…I wish I could say more, but it's such an interesting journey that they all go on this season, and I'm really excited for everyone to see it.”

The character of Sherry, on the other hand, went into a storm shelter with Dwight (Austin Amelio) before the bomb went off. Evangelista told the site during the interview that the two of them ended in a good place in their relationship, but there will still be some challenges this season. “They survived the bomb explosion, and in those last few moments…were able to do something for somebody else together, and realizing how that made them both feel, but then also how it empowered both of them, I think it has given them this mission moving forward, and I think they like being mission-oriented people. I do think that they help each other, and they make each other stronger, and they certainly serve as each other's moral compass, but that being said, these are two very strong characters that have grown and evolved so much individually. I think there is going to be a lot of tension in this new chapter with this new mission, both within the relationship, of course, but in the environment that's very challenging in itself.”

The actresses also talked to SciFi Vision about what parts of their backstories they would like to get to see. “I'd flashback on any part of Sarah,” said Collins. “I'm just curious, because I know so little. I want to see Sarah and Wendell (Daryl Mitchell) in the past. What did that look like? There's so much that is still unanswered regarding the two. I want to know more about that.”

Both Evangelista and Nisenson would want to see more before the apocalypse. “I would probably flashback to Sherry and Dwight, young, driving around in a car, going to have a couple of beers. [I’d] like to see what they were like when they were younger and in love.” said Evangelista.

The younger actress said she would want to see Charlie’s interactions with her family, as well as what her dynamics with the Vultures, Mel and Ennis, were originally like. “I would love to flashback to…Charlie with her parents and what her life was like just at home, being just a regular young girl doing her thing and to just see how she was when this all really started.”

The three also talked to the site about how they thought they would do in a real apocalypse and a character from the universe they would want to take with them. Both Evangelista and Collins thought they would fare well. Evangelista said she would take Michonne (Danai Gurira) or Rick (Andrew Lincoln), whereas Collins said she would take Carol. “Carol would be pretty good; she's physically strong. Between the two of us, I think the two of us [with] our smarts, put our bodies together, and I think we’d kick ass.”

Nisenson said she wouldn’t do as well but she says she would take Strand (Colman Domingo) with her. “He just has something about him. He's very, very smart, and he is very strong. So, I would take Strand, but he would fare well; I would not.”

For the rest of the interview, be sure to read the transcript below and watch an all-new episode of Fear the Walking Dead, Sunday on AMC.

Zoom Interview

Fear the Walking Dead
Mo Collins, Alexa Nisenson, and Christine Evangelista

October 8, 2021

SCIFI VISION: 
I have a question for Alexa and Mo, and then a question for Christine. For Alexa and Mo, my question is - and I don't know how much you can tell us, probably not much - your characters get in a helicopter at the end of the season. Is there anything at all that you're allowed to tease about the CRM and that crossover element? I know you really can't say much, but maybe something that you're kind of allowed say at all?

ALEXA NISENSON:   Like you said, that's a tough one, because there's not much to say, but I think it's really interesting how we've been able to incorporate it into this universe and into this show. And I think, because this group got in that helicopter, some of the characters getting in there don't know too much about it. So, I think it's very, very new to them, and that's a really interesting thing. So, I wish I could say more, but it's such an interesting journey that they all go on this season, and I'm really excited for everyone to see it. I know that was a very hush-hush answer.

SCIFI VISION:  Can you add anything, Mo?

Mo CollinsMO COLLINS:   Yeah, I can add something. I will. Listen close. Are you listening close? This is the one vehicle, this helicopter, that we have not seen Sarah drive.

SCIFI VISION:  That's true.

MO COLLINS:   There’s a fact for you. There you go. As of yet, Sarah has not flown the helicopter.

SCIFI VISION:  All right. Then, Christine, when I talked to you at the end of last season, you talked about how June (Jenna Elfman) losing John (Garret Dillahunt) let Sherry see that maybe she needed to be present with Dwight. Is there something you can tease about the relationship moving forward this season? Is it gonna work out for them? Are they in a good place?

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   Yeah, I think they they ended in a good place, having been given this second shot, this second shot together. They survived the bomb explosion, and in those last few moments of realizing, what would you do with your one precious life? How would you spend that? How would you spend it? They were able to do something for somebody else together, and realizing how that made them both feel, but then also how it empowered both of them, I think it has given them this mission moving forward, and I think they like being mission-oriented people. I do think that they help each other, and they make each other stronger, and they certainly serve as each other's moral compass, but that being said, these are two very strong characters that have grown and evolved so much individually. I think there is going to be a lot of tension in this new chapter with this new mission, both within the relationship, of course, but in the environment that's very challenging in itself.

QUESTION:  How do your characters essentially get up every day and deal with this mess? Now part of the world is nuclear here, so how do you guys get up? We can start with Alexa and make our way down.

ALEXA NISENSON:   That's a really interesting question. I think for Charlie, it's the hope of things being okay again, and I think it is that that's driving her every day. We're really going to get to explore that, her hope of things being okay. She is very, very mature, and she has had to grow up, but at the end of the day, she's still a teenager. There're still so many things that she hasn't gotten to experience yet. So, I think what's driving her to keep pushing and move forward is to be reunited with the people that she cares about, because I think she did get in the helicopter with her little group, so she knows they're okay, but there's still so many people in the group that she doesn't know where they are and if they're okay and how they've made it out. So, I think that's what's driving her, and the possibility of this world being somewhat normal again - I don't know if I can say normal, because it's never normal, but the apocalypse that she has become used to and knows how to deal with. I think that's what's motivating her at this point.

MO COLLINS:   I have to say, I think that is an incredibly insightful question. It's actually a question that probably every single person tries to answer every single day of our lives, right? What gets us up? What gets us out of bed? It's such a good question. I think for Sarah, she's very pragmatic in that way. So, for her, she doesn't overthink things. She's gonna put one leg in the pant leg and then the other and do what is next to be done. I think it's also a philosophy that really works in life. I know that a lot of people in recovery, it's that one day at a time, one step at a time, and you just do what is in front of you. Just do what's in front of you, and that is how you end up getting your day done and accomplishing things. I think that’s Sarah's modus operandi, if you will, just get up and do it. What does somebody need? Do you need something? Do we need something? And Sarah just moves and does it. But I suppose if she laid there for too long, she might have a moment of going, “I can't get up.” If she starts thinking about it, she might not get up. Great question.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   It is a great question. I think, for Sherry, she's a very mission-oriented type of woman. She has a mission, wants to execute the mission, has a purpose, needs to achieve the purpose, and I think that's how she operates. I think she's somebody that has a tremendous amount of heart within it, too, and I think really does want to do what's best or what she thinks is best for people and the people that she loves and the people that she wants to protect. So, I think it's with a heart and a mission that she wakes up every morning.

QUESTION:  I've noticed over the past couple of years for all of your characters, that each and every one of them is searching for something in their respective seasonal arcs. Without spoiling, what are your characters searching for in season seven?

MO COLLINS:   Sarah's searching for Wendell, which because they got on that helicopter, or she got on the helicopter, he didn't, so that search in and of itself it turns into an introspective for her, because without Wendell, who is she? So, that is what is being discovered: who is who is she without him? When we lose someone, whether it's the ultimate loss or, or just through a relationship breaking up, whatever it is, it’s like you kind of have to rediscover yourself and find out how you proceed, and you have to look at yourself. And that's the hardest damn thing, isn't it, to look at yourself and grow? God help us. But that's really what Sarah is confronted with. As much as she loves and appreciates the people around her, and they're great support, how does Sarah do it without him? How does she get up? To go back to that other question, what gets her up when her reason for living isn't around?

ALEXA NISENSON:   I think for Charlie, like I said, I think she this season is really searching for some semblance of a better life and more hope and a better situation. And she, of course, is searching for the rest of the group and wanting answers -  if they're okay, where they are. Because everybody is kind of in their own situations, they really don't know if everybody's okay, and if everyone made it out. So, I think she's searching for that, but she's also searching for a chance to be happy, which I think is really special, and we really get to explore that which I'm really excited about - Charlie's happiness.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   I think Sherry, physically or externally, I think really is just searching for somewhere safe. I think we all are, somewhere safe, somewhere where we could breathe, literally breathe, because everything is just so dangerous. And I think internally, very similar to what [Alexa] said, I think Sherry's looking to be happy, and I think Sherry is looking to continue to heal herself, and from everything she's learned from last season, and looking to be with Dwight and do it with Dwight in this new way, the best way that she can given everything that she's learned.

SCIFI VISION:  If you were to get more flashbacks for your character, is there any element to the backstory that you would really like to know [about]? Start with Mo, and then go to Christine.

MO COLLINS:   Oh, I'd flashback on any part of Sarah. I'm just curious, because I know so little. I want to see Sarah and Wendell in the past. What did that look like? There's so much that is still unanswered regarding the two. I want to know more about that.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   There's this scene that is in this season where Sherry and Dwight are having a trip down memory lane and talking about their family and their childhood and what it was like growing up, and they didn't talk about the apocalypse. They didn't talk about what was happening now, and it was just this really great scene. I remember finishing it and turning to Dwight and having this very - I squealed. I love scenes like that, where you get to see or talk about life before all of this and what that was like together. So, I love that moment, but I would probably flashback to Sherry and Dwight, young, driving around in a car, going to have a couple of beers. [I’d] like to see what they were like when they were younger and in love.

Alexa NisensonALEXA NISENSON:   I would love to flashback to Charlie with her parents, definitely, and to see what that dynamic was like. Also I would love to see how Charlie came across the Vultures, Mel and Ennis, back in season four, and how that whole dynamic started and how she truly felt about them at first and how she grew to trust them and how they took her in and how that whole thing formed. But definitely Charlie with her parents and what her life was like just at home, being just a regular young girl doing her thing and to just see how she was when this all really started.

QUESTION:  Do you have any idea what your arcs are? And also is the door open for you to make suggestions about things you want your character to do?

MO COLLINS:   Well, the show is so different now with the anthology, so as far as arc goes, it's such a different thing, because there's the arc of the show and then you've also individually got the arc of a character, and there's time in between all of that and the cycle that is Fear the Walking Dead. But I certainly try. I play the character, but I didn't create her, and so I trust where they choose to take Sarah. If there's something that I feel doesn't jive with who I believe Sarah to be now, they're always open to hearing me talk about it, always. That's the great thing; you always want that creatively as an artist if you're in a collaborative situation to be able to say, “Not feeling that.” And they can say, “Well, we are, and you're doing it anyway,” which is fine, but to be able to say it is always a nice thing. I don't know much about it, sorry.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   There's always the call in the beginning of filming early in the season where Andrew [Chambliss] and Ian [Goldberg] will tell us what they plan to happen, and then, that I think allows for some conversation. There've been ideas that both Austin and I would have, and we would talk about it together, and then we would go call Ian and Andrew and be like, “So, what do you think of this?” But…everyone's always open to talk, even Scott [Gimple]. Everyone's around and just very invested and involved. I think that's been actually kind of great, me and Austin, especially him having lived with his character for so long, and where things could go and what we like to do, but yeah, we do have that conversation, which is great.

ALEXA NISENSON:   I think being collaborative as an artist is the best feeling, especially when you've been with a character for so long, and you've seen them go on such a journey. But arc-wise, I wish I could just talk about it. I'm really, really excited for everyone to see Charlie's story this season, and it's really special to me, and yeah, it's incredible. Like I said, being collaborative and being on a show where your character is always evolving is such an incredible feeling as an actor, to portray a character with so many layers and who's gone on such a wild journey and is growing up is really incredible.

QUESTION:  I want to say, first off all, that you all have made an amazing impact on the show and in a very short period of time. With that in mind, what are you most proud of as an actor when it comes to your contributions to Fear the Walking Dead and The Walking Dead universe as well, for Christine.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   Thanks. I was proud of telling this story about a love being not lost, reunited, and hope, and when you hold on to hope you can will things to happen in your life. I think that has been such an uplifting story, and I've loved how people responded to that. For me, being a part of that was emotional also. I think, also, for me, as an actor on the show, the physicality of it is really, really rewarding, and I pushed myself beyond the limits that I thought that I had, and the strength that you need emotionally, but really physically on a show like this. We were saying earlier how pumped we are to do all of this, and it really is, it's totally empowering from that. I've been very empowered by the show.

ALEXA NISENSON:   Adding on to it Christine just said, I think one of the things that I'm the most proud of is how I have pushed myself over the past couple of years to do things. Like, I've never done a project like this at all where there's so many intense stunts and things going on, and the physicality to the show is such an important and huge aspect of it. It's not just about the dialogue; it's the whole picture. That is something that I had never done before, and I think we have all pushed ourselves to do some crazy, intense, amazing things, but in the end it's so worth it, because when you watch it, it's just like, “Wow, we all did this. We all created this did it in real life.” We all have to do those things, but it's so worth it when you watch it. I think we have all pushed ourselves and made each other really proud.

MO COLLINS:   Thanks, by the way, that's a really nice compliment that you gave to all of us. We appreciate that. I think, for me, one of the things I'm super proud of is being a source of light in this dark world. That was my assignment as a comedian, to come in. I do believe it sounds a lot easier than it is, because drama is not the same world that I come from. And to come in, you still have to be taken seriously. So, that was a really great thing, and I'm very proud of the way I handled that. And the things that I've done with Sarah, to not only bring in that comedy, but to have a truly authentic character going on, she's more than just funny. She is heartfelt, and she is authentically Sarah. So, I'm really proud of what I've learned how to do, to come into the world of drama and to do something so completely different for myself. It's just so far off from doing Joan Callamezzo from Parks and Rec, which is all dressed up and makeup and heels and everything. To settle into this, she's the realist, and she's the closest character I've ever played to myself. So, learning how to do that, as an actress, has been really, really satisfying, really satisfying. I'm proud, and I feed myself cake because of it.

Christine EvangelistaSCIFI VISION:   This is kind of a fun one I asked the other group. If there was really a zombie apocalypse, how do you guys think that you would fare in it? And if you could take one character from the universe, any of the shows, with you to help you out, who would you take and why?

MO COLLINS:   I think I'd be really good in an apocalypse, and here's why, because here's something I know of myself at fifty-six: fools rush in, and I am a fool. I've had numerous situations in my life. It's not always smart, and I understand that, but fools rush in. In a world where you need immediate people to rush in and just try and do things or to help, I'm your lady. I'm exactly who you want in an apocalypse. I may not have all of the physical strength. So, in that case, let's see, who would I take? Who's the strongest character, physically from this world? That's who I want. Although Carol would be pretty good; she's physically strong. Between the two of us, I think the two of us and our smarts, put our bodies together, and I think we’d kick ass.

CHRISTINE EVANGELISTA:   I also think I would be killer in an apocalypse, literally. One of my favorite words is “game.” I love that word. I actually I heard you say that earlier, but I've used that to describe myself before, but I believe it. You're game; you're up for it. It's going to happen; you're going to do it. So, that's why I think that my survival skills would be on point. But who would I want? Who would I want? I had thought Carol. Michonne, Michonne I love; I would love to bring her or Rick. I think Rick's a warrior, but he's got so much heart.

ALEXA NISENSON:   I would definitely not fare well at all. I know that for sure. [laughs] I definitely would not. I can just see it right now. I would be hiding in the corner, probably crying…I know I would just not do well, but if I had to take someone to help me out to try, I would take Strand (Colman Domingo). He just has something about him. He's very, very smart, and he is very strong. So, I would take Strand, but he would fare well; I would not.

SCIFI VISION:  That's, okay. I'd probably be the one that would trip and fall and get killed that way.

ALEXA NISENSON:   Yeah, I would too.

SCIFI VISION:  Something clumsy, that would be me.

MO COLLINS:   As long as you were trying though, it's all good, right? We can trip and fall, it's come what may out there. It's come what may.

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