10 Actors Who FREAKED OUT When Their TV Character Died

These actors were less-than-thrilled by their characters' deaths.

The Sopranos Ralph
HBO

There's no denying that audience members get extremely attached to their favourite TV characters - we spend years getting to know these people, and then one day, they're gone.

When they die, we feel an actual, profound sense of loss, and we're not the only ones - the actors themselves spend years in the headspace of the characters they portray on any long-running series, and so it's little surprise they're not always thrilled about being killed off.

These 10 actors, who played some of the most iconic and beloved characters on hit shows from the last 20 years, all categorically freaked out when they found out they were being given a long walk off a short pier - and better yet, they then had to film it too.

In some cases the actors were deeply upset that a character they loved was going in the ground, while in others they felt grief at no longer being part of a tightly-knit cast and crew, or maybe they were just mad at losing a well-paying gig.

Whatever the reason, these actors didn't take the news of their on-screen demise too well at all...

10. Julie Benz Had A Panic Attack - Dexter

The Sopranos Ralph
Showtime

Few TV deaths can claim to be as shocking as that of Dexter's (Michael C. Hall) wife Rita (Julie Benz) at the end of Dexter's fourth season. Out of nowhere, Rita was murdered by the Trinity Killer (a bone-chilling John Lithgow) as a final "parting gift" to Dexter.

On an episode of Michael Rosenbaum's Inside of You podcast, Benz called Rita's death the worst thing that's ever happened to her as an actress, and that as soon as she sensed the news was coming, she launched into a panic attack:

"I found out three days before... I started having a panic attack, and I called my manager at the time, and I said, 'Oh my God, I think they're killing me off.'"

Benz added that when she met with the show's producers to have the news officially broken to her, she tried to rush through the meeting to keep herself in check, only for them to desire a longer conversation to properly process her exit, causing her to end up "bawling."

And worse still, Benz had just come from the gym, and so was wearing a sports bra and leggings - and sweaty, of course - while being told she was getting the chop. She added:

"All I could think about is that movie where the guy is getting broken up with while he's naked. Forgetting Sarah Marshall. I don't have a shirt on, and I'm losing my job. I felt so vulnerable... I was really upset. It was such a great family, and here you are being told, 'OK, we're still going to be getting together as a family, but you are on your own.' It was really hard."
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Stay at home dad who spends as much time teaching his kids the merits of Martin Scorsese as possible (against the missus' wishes). General video game, TV and film nut. Occasional sports fan. Full time loon.