Melissa McBride

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Melissa McBride
Born Melissa Suzanne McBride
(1965-05-23) May 23, 1965 (age 50)
Lexington, Kentucky, U.S.
Occupation Actress, casting director
Years active 1993–present

Melissa Suzanne McBride (born May 23, 1965)[1] is an American actress and former casting director, best known for her role as Carol Peletier on the AMC series The Walking Dead. McBride has garnered critical acclaim and received multiple awards and nominations for her role on the show.[2] She began her acting career as a guest star in minor roles on television series, and in supporting roles in made-for-television films, before becoming a casting director.

Early life[edit]

McBride was born in Lexington, Kentucky and is one of four children. Her father owned a business and her mother had studied at the historic Pasadena Playhouse.[3]


McBride at Starfest in April 2013

McBride began her acting career in 1991, appearing in several television commercials for clients such as Rooms To Go as well as being a spokeswoman for Ford.[4][5] She made her series television debut in a 1993 episode of ABC legal drama series Matlock.[5] She later guest starred in several other television drama series, including In the Heat of the Night; American Gothic; Profiler; Walker, Texas Ranger; and Dawson's Creek. In the latter, she played Nina – a film buff who charms Dawson after his breakup with Jen – in the season one episode "Road Trip" in 1998, and in 2003 returned to show in the series finale playing a different character.[6]

In the 1990s, McBride had supporting roles in several made-for-television movies, such as Her Deadly Rival (1995) opposite Annie Potts and Harry Hamlin, Close to Danger (1997) with Rob Estes, Any Place But Home (1997) and Pirates of Silicon Valley (1999). In 1996, she appeared on the CBS miniseries A Season in Purgatory, based on 1993 novel by Dominick Dunne with the same name. She worked as a film and commercial casting director in Atlanta, Georgia, from 2000 until 2010.[7] She also starred in several short films during this time. In 2007, director Frank Darabont cast McBride as the "woman with the kids at home" in the ensemble-cast science-fiction horror film The Mist, alongside Thomas Jane, Laurie Holden and Marcia Gay Harden.[3][5] She was in contention for a bigger role in the film but didn't want to take a significant amount of time away from her job as a casting director.[4] The following year, she appeared in the Lifetime television movie Living Proof.

The Walking Dead[edit]

McBride's earlier relationship with Darabont led him to cast her as Carol Peletier in the AMC television drama series The Walking Dead – her biggest role to date.[8] Peletier is a middle-aged widow and caring mother to daughter Sophia, fighting to survive in a violent apocalyptic world populated with flesh-eating zombies and the few surviving humans, some of whom are even more diabolical and dangerous than the zombies themselves. McBride did not audition for role, which she thought was temporary.[4] She was a recurring cast member in the first season and promoted to series regular for season 2.[9][10] McBride's name appeared in the opening credits sequence beginning with the first episode of season 4. Carol Peletier was supposed to have been killed off in the episode "Killer Within", but the producers eventually decided against it.[11]

McBride at the Saturn Awards in 2014.

As the series progresses, McBride's character develops from a weak and dependent woman into a strong, loyal warrior. The direction of her character is contrasted between the two mediums. In the comic series, Carol is much younger and exhibits a neurotic, self-centered, and naive demeanor. Throughout her time in the comics, she grows increasingly unstable to the point of being self-destructive. The television show differs in these regards, as she is shown to be a stern, pragmatic, and compassionate individual who has been gradually building inner strength. Producers of the series, Scott M. Gimple and Robert Kirkman, said in 2014 that "Carol is her own unique character; it would be a disservice to Melissa McBride to say she's evolved into the Carol from comics. The Carol in the TV show is a wholly original creation that we'll continue to explore on the show to great effect. Everyone in writers' room loves that character, and we're thrilled with what Melissa has brought to the table. She has definitely become a character that is one to watch, and there's some really exciting stuff ahead for her."[12]

McBride has received critical acclaim for her performance as Carol and won positive reviews from critics during the third, fourth and fifth seasons.[13] Many critics praised McBride's performance in her character's centered episode "The Grove" of the fourth season.[14][15][16] Others singled out the actions of Carol in the season 5 premiere No Sanctuary, which earned critical praise and positive fan reception. Despite the praise of some critics[17][18][19] and a fan campaign,[20] McBride did not receive a nomination for the 2014 Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Supporting Actress in a Drama Series.[21] She however, won the 40th Annual Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress on Television,[22][23] and was nominated for the 2014 Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Series for her performance in season 4.[24] In March 2015, McBride was nominated for an Fangoria Chainsaw Award for Best Leading Actress in a Television series for her role as Carol.[25] She would then once again win the Saturn Award for Best Supporting Actress on Television at the 41st Saturn Awards for the second year in a row.[26]

Personal life[edit]

In the mid-1980s, McBride moved to Atlanta, Georgia[1][4] where she still lives.



Year Title Role Notes
1995 Mutant Species Tiffany's Mom
2002 Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys, TheThe Dangerous Lives of Altar Boys Mrs. Doyle
2006 Nailed! Olga/Waitress/Agent Short film
2007 Promise, TheThe Promise Stacey Johnson Short film
2007 Mist, TheThe Mist Woman with Kids at Home
2007 Lost Crossing Sheila Short film
2008 Delgo Miss Sutley / Elder Pearo (voice)
2014 The Reconstruction of William Zero Dr. Ashley Bronson
2016 The Happys[27] Krista


Year Title Role Notes
1993 Matlock Darlene Kellogg/Waitress Episode: "Matlock's Bad, Bad, Bad Dream"
1994 In the Heat of the Night WPMM Reporter Episodes: "Give Me Your Life: Part 1" and "Give Me Your Life: Part 1"
1995 American Gothic Holly Gallagher Episode: "Dead to the World"
1995 Her Deadly Rival Ellie Television film
1996 Profiler Walker Young Episode: "Insight"
1996 Season in Purgatory, AA Season in Purgatory Mary Pat Bradley Television film
1997 Walker, Texas Ranger Dr. Rachel Woods Episodes: "Lucas: Part 1" and "Lucas: Part 2"
1997 Close to Danger Natalie Television film
1997 Any Place But Home Brett Television film
1998, 2003 Dawson's Creek Nina / Melanie Episodes: "Road Trip", "All Good Things..." and "...Must Come to an End"
1999 Nathan Dixon Janine Keach Television pilot
1999 Pirates of Silicon Valley Elizabeth Holmes Television film
2008 Living Proof Sally Television film
2010–present Walking Dead, TheThe Walking Dead Carol Peletier Season 1 (recurring role; 4 episodes)
Season 2-present (main role; 51 episodes)
2013 The Conan O'Brien Show Carol Peletier Guest Actor/Cameo
Casting Director
Year Title
2006 The Last Adam
2007 The Promise
2009 Golden Minutes
2009 This Side Up
2010 The Party
2010 Broken Moment

Awards and nominations[edit]

Year Award Category Work Result
2012 Satellite Awards [28] Best Cast – Television Series The Walking Dead Won
2013 Eyegore Awards [29] Best Ensemble Cast Award Won
2014 Critics' Choice Television Award Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Nominated
Saturn Award Best Supporting Actress on Television Won
Gold Derby TV Award [30][31] Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Nominated
EWwy Awards Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Nominated
2015 Saturn Award [26] Best Supporting Actress on Television Won
Fangoria Chainsaw Awards [32] Best TV Supporting Actress Nominated
ComicBook TV Awards [33] Best Actress in a #ComicBook Television Series Won
Tell-Tale TV Awards [34] Favorite Female Performer in a Drama Nominated
EWwy Awards [35] Best Supporting Actress in a Drama Won[36]
CarterMatt Awards [37] Top TV Actress Won
2013 Shorty Awards [38] Best of Social Media Herself Nominated
2014 Critics' Choice Television Award [39] Online Love Award Won


  1. ^ a b "Melissa McBride". Buddy TV. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  2. ^ "Carol Peletier/ Melissa McBride". AMC. Retrieved June 2, 2015. 
  3. ^ a b Villarreal, Yvonne (November 4, 2013). ""The Walking Dead" -- Carol on her own". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved April 2, 2015. 
  4. ^ a b c d Ho, Rodney (October 8, 2014). "Atlanta actress Melissa McBride transforms Carol, her 'Walking Dead' character". Atlanta Journal Constitution. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  5. ^ a b c "Melissa McBride". TV Guide. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  6. ^ Lloyd, Sarah Anne (November 6, 2013). "Melissa McBride: 6 Things to Know About the Walking Dead Actress". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  7. ^ Q&A - Melissa McBride (Carol), AMC, March, 2011, Retrieved March 20, 2012
  8. ^ Hibbard, James (November 30, 2010). "AMC adds 'Walking Dead' cast". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  9. ^ Ausiello, Michael (April 10, 2012). "Ask Ausiello: Spoilers on HIMYM, Private Practice, Bones, Walking Dead, Parks and Rec and More!". TVLine. Retrieved August 8, 2015. 
  10. ^ Ausiello, Michael (March 10, 2013). "Melissa McBride Clears Up Walking Dead Contract Mystery, Declares: 'I Am a Series Regular'". TVLine. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  11. ^ Sprague, Rachel (January 18, 2013). "'The Walking Dead': Carol was supposed to die". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  12. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (October 16, 2014). "'Walking Dead': Is Carol Becoming the New Andrea?". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  13. ^ Schwartz, Terri (March 17, 2014). "Melissa McBride deserves an Emmy for 'The Walking Dead' Season 4". Tribune Media Services. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  14. ^ "TVLine's Performer of the Week: Melissa McBride". TVLine. March 22, 2014. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  15. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (March 16, 2014). "'Walking Dead' Dissection: Melissa McBride Talks Carol's Devastating Decision". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  16. ^ St. John, Allen (March 16, 2014). "'Look At The Flowers': Carol's Wrenching Choice Changes 'The Walking Dead' Forever In A Shocking Episode 414". Forbes. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  17. ^ Schwartz, Terri (July 3, 2014). "Emmys 2014: Melissa McBride deserves 'The Walking Dead's' first acting nomination". Tribune Media Services. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  18. ^ Woodard, Darryl (March 20, 2014). "The Walking Dead: Melissa McBride, an Emmy Worthy Actress". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  19. ^ Moye, Clarence (June 12, 2014). "FYC Best Supporting Actress – Drama: Melissa McBride". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  20. ^ Carbone, Gina (May 22, 2014). "Give Melissa McBride an Emmy! The Walking Dead Fans Launch "McEmmy Campaign"". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  21. ^ Ausiello, Michael (July 10, 2014). "Primetime Emmy Nominations 2014: My Snappy Judgements". TVLine. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  22. ^ Johns, Nikara (February 25, 2014). "'Gravity,' 'Desolation of Smaug' lead Saturn Award nominations". Variety. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  23. ^ "40th Annual Saturn Awards Nominations Include The Conjuring, The Walking Dead". February 27, 2014. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  24. ^ Bacle, Ariana (May 28, 2014). "Critics' Choice TV Awards 2014: And the nominees are...". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  25. ^ Hanely, Ken W. (March 2, 2015). "For Your Consideration: The 2015 Chainsaw Award Nominees for Best Supporting Actress in a TV Series!". Fangoria. Retrieved May 28, 2014. 
  26. ^ a b Tapley, Kristopher (March 3, 2015). "'Captain America,' 'The Walking Dead' lead 2015 Saturn Awards nominations". Hitfix. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  27. ^ Sneider, Jeff. "Amanda Bauer, Jack DePew Join 'Walking Dead,' 'Wet Hot' Stars in 'The Happys'". The Wrap. Retrieved 11 August 2015. 
  28. ^ Kilday, Gregg (December 3, 2012). "Satellite Awards Nominates 10 Films for Best Motion Picture". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  30. ^ Montgomery, Daniel (July 7, 2014). "'Orange is the New Black,' 'Game of Thrones' dominate Gold Derby TV Award nominations!". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  31. ^ Montgomery, Daniel (August 20, 2014). "'Orange is the New Black,' 'Breaking Bad' sweep Gold Derby TV Awards". Retrieved March 23, 2015. 
  32. ^ "The 2015 FANGORIA Chainsaw Awards Winners and Full Results!". Fangoria Chainsaw Awards. Retrieved July 25, 2015. 
  33. ^ "ComicBook TVAwards". Twitter. Retrieved 11 August 2015. 
  34. ^ "The 2015 Tell-Tale TV Awards: Results! Outlander, Jane the Virgin, The 100, and More". Tell Tale Awards. Retrieved July 25, 2015. 
  35. ^ "EWwy Awards 2015: Vote for Outlander, Jane the Virgin, and more Emmy-snubbed favorites". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved July 20, 2015. 
  36. ^ "Best Supporting Actress, Drama - EWwy Awards 2015 - Meet Your Winners -". Entertainment Weekly's Retrieved 11 August 2015. 
  37. ^ CarterMatt Awards Retrieved December 30, 2015.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  38. ^ "MELISSA WAS NOMINATED FOR A SHORTY AWARD!". The Shorty Awards. Retrieved July 20, 2015. 
  39. ^ "Melissa McBride wins the "Online Love" Award!". Retrieved 11 August 2015. 

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