[Spoilers ahead.] Were the two-for-one deaths of Andrea and Milton on the season-three finale of The Walking Dead really hard to take? They were even tougher for the actors, who had to let go of their characters not once but twice after the showrunners scrapped the first ending shot and called the cast back for reshoots two months later. Dallas Roberts revealed the original season-finale ending to Vulture when we ran into him last night at the Broadway after-party for Nora Ephron’s final play, Lucky Guy.
“I died four times,” Roberts joked, referring to how his character Milton died a human death, then a walker death, through two rounds of shooting.
The original two deaths found Milton getting shot by the Governor, rather than stabbed, for his human death. And then for his walker death, “Tyrese kicked the door open, not Rick,” Roberts said. “And Michonne and crossbow weren’t there. And Milton’s coming up out of [Andrea] with a chunk out of her. And Tyrese, I don’t remember the implement, I think like a crowbar or a hammer, just took him out.”
Images were released prior to the reshoots of this original ending, but how does a superfan tell the difference between ending No. 1 and ending No. 2? Roberts said look for Milton’s glasses. “You’ll notice that during the finale, he never had glasses on,” the actor pointed out. “So if you see a still with him with glasses on, and blood, that’s from the original [ending] that was shot.”
Because Milton was just a “beautiful tertiary character,” Roberts was okay with having to go through the death scene one more time. He felt worse for Holden, because Andrea was a core character, and for the actress to get the news, “that sucked for her in so many ways.” And when they got the call that there would be a new version, “imagine her heart leaping in her chest” thinking maybe she wasn’t being killed off after all, Roberts said. “And then they go, ‘No, it’s exactly the same, it’s just a little different.’ It was beautifully brutal to shoot those scenes.”