Khary Payton Talks Bringing Ezekiel into 'The Walking Dead'
Khary Payton will be playing a beloved character from the comic book series when he enters season 7 of The Walking Dead as Ezekiel. The character fancies himself the king of a place dubbed the Kingdom, which is really an abandoned school.
When asked about bringing the character to life, he said "it's like somebody asked me what exactly would you like. I'm just going to check off a list of all of these things. Would you like to be introduced as a badass? Yes, I would.
"Would you like a large tiger that will do whatever you want? Yes, I would. Would you like to be introduced on the biggest television show in the world? It’s stupid what is happening to me.”
"This doesn’t happen to everybody and this doesn’t happen every day. I don’t ever want to forget that.” He continued on to talk about the role and world of an actor. ""I always say that when you’re in this acting business, you get a lot of rejection.
"You get a lot of people telling you no and you’ve got to get up, dust yourself off, and try again, and I feel like in a way Ezekiel fits that same mold where he’s in the hope business,” Khary said. "“I always say I’m in the hope business. You’ve got to stay hopeful. You’ve got to get up off your behind and try again no matter how many times they tell you it’s not going to work out.
"Your opinion’s got to overshadow whatever negativity might come your way. In a zombie apocalypse one can find themselves getting down about their situation, but Ezekiel’s not one of those people. He fights with all he’s got to make sure he stays positive and stays joyful. That’s what I love about him."
On meeting the character, "you first come upon him and you think he's a little bit out there, and he is a little bit out there. But the truth is that everything about this world is a little bit out there, and if you want to survive in it and if you want to survive on your own terms, you need to preach your philosophy and preach it loudly so that it doesn't get drowned by all the crazy."