What are the important themes that the series explores?
Aliyah Royale : One of the biggest themes the show explores is the question of identity, who you are compared to who others want you to be. For Iris, on the day of the apocalypse, she is 5/6 years old and she was very afraid and she lost a very important thing for her that night, she thinks it is her fault. From that point on, she has been doing all she can to make up for it, she does whatever the others want her to do in this community. When she decides to leave, she will embark on a great adventure.
Hal Cumpston : The show is also about the transition from being a teenager to becoming an adult. Everyone had to go through this even though some people have the attitudes of kids. This coming of age speaks to everyone. On top of that, and I think that's a common thread with The Walking Dead , you're never sure what the characters are going to do in these crazy situations, and there are also the moral issues.
The relationship between Iris and Silas will be developed
What can you tease about the sequel to Season 1 regarding your characters?
Aliyah Royale : I have to be careful what I say! (laughs) What I like is that over the course of this season, we fall in love with these new characters but we will also meet other very interesting characters on our way. It is really funny to find out who is good or bad, who will help them or try to discourage them, to prevent them from achieving their goal.
Hal Cumpston : For Silas, there is room for evolution because in the first episodes, he doesn't say much! So there will be an evolution for sure. He will eventually speak!
Aliyah Royale : The relationship between Iris and Silas is going to be developed and it will be quite powerful. It's one of my favorite things about the show.
How do you go about playing a character … who doesn't say anything?
Hal Cumpston : It was probably not that bad because I had never done an American accent (he's Australian, editor's note) before so it was almost lucky not to have a lot of dialogue! I was a little afraid to find myself a little in the background because I was not doing anything. But afterwards, I discovered his story and it makes sense. If he is an introvert, it is because he experienced trauma during his childhood, he suffers from anxiety. I based this character on people I knew and even on myself when I find myself in situations where I am not comfortable.
Hope, Iris, Elton and Silas don't feel like they're surviving but just living
How is the plot similar or different to that of The Walking Dead?
Aliyah Royale : It has one big point in common which is the fact of finding yourself in this unknown world, of not knowing what awaits you at every turn, we don't know if we are going to die! This is a point in common between all the series in The Walking Dead universe. I think The Walking Dead: World Beyond brings a much more vivid perspective as The Walking Dead and Fear the Walking Dead are more about death, the characters are trying to survive in a world that is dead. Hope, Iris, Elton and Silas don't feel like they're surviving but just living. This is why they decide to leave their community, their life begins as soon as they go beyond these walls.
Hal Cumpston : Obviously there will always be parallels between the shows because they are part of the same universe but even though they are part of the same universe, there is also a lot to explore in The Walking Dead: World Beyond .
Have you watched the original series?
Aliyah Royale : I have an insane fear of zombies so I confess that I tried to stay away from this universe for a very long time until I was chosen to play in World Beyond . There, I said to myself that I should surely watch the series! I've watched The Walking Dead , Fear the Walking Dead , read the comics, and I love that our characters are new, they don't exist in the comics. It keeps us from stressing.
Who is your favorite character from The Walking Dead universe?
Aliyah Royale : Negan is my favorite! What I love is when you wonder if a character is nice or bad, if the circumstances can somehow force you to do bad things. This is also the case for Elizabeth played by Julia Ormond in World Beyond . Negan and Elizabeth are the perfect example. We do not know if they are doing this for the good of everyone or just because they want to do it.
Hal Cumpston : I love Daryl. It's hard not to love him, to support him. Even if at the beginning, it is a little weird, we end up loving it!
Interview by Aubéry Mallet during a round table with international media.