As we eagerly wait to see if a certain person is alive or dead or zombified on The Walking Dead, we’re getting some more interested AMC zombie-related news. At the end of the day, all this zombie madness would have never happened without one man, and his name is George Romero. Romero launched a whole genre in 1968 with Night of the Living Dead, a film that’s been copied, examined, and downright ripped off for almost 50 years, except now it seems that Romero himself is doing the ripping. Following in the footsteps of The Walking Dead, a new series based on Romero’s comic Empire of the Dead is now said to be coming to AMC.
Now before you get too excited, you should know that this is not the official word from AMC itself, nor was it Romero that made the announcement. (You may recall that he talked around the subject while at Fan Expo Canada back in September.) No, this comes from Empire of the Dead artist Arthur Suydam, who dropped this while at Wizard World Comic Con Louisville last weekend (via WHAS11):
The series that I just finished up for Marvel Comics as a matter of fact, so this is me and George Romero… This just got signed to AMC. This is going to be the new big zombie series on AMC, it’s expected to be this one right here.
That’s a pretty big detail to let slip since all we’ve known about the proposed TV project based on the Marvel comic book is that it was in development with the production company Demarest (A Most Wanted Man, Tusk) with Romero and Peter Grunwald to be writing and executive producing. In fact, back at Fan Expo, Romero wasn’t even sure if it would be made for broadcast TV or the web. AMC though is la creme of TV production right now, so that would be a major get for both Romero and Empire.
An interesting question to come out of that though is if Suydam is correct, and AMC is picking up Empire of the Dead, what fate might there be for Fear the Walking Dead? Original recipe Walking Dead continues to be a powerhouse in terms of ratings and fan reaction, but Fear the Walking Dead seemed to come and go (well, go anyway) without much fanfare. AMC is dedicated to another season of Fear, so might it have only one more season to prove itself or else get replace by Empire of the Dead? I guess we’ll see.
As for Empire of the Dead, it’s a 15-part series that tells the story of a New York City quarantined after a zombie outbreak. The surviving New Yorkers though not only have to deal with the walking dead, but the living dead as well, with all humans in the Big Apple are caught between zombies and vampires. Now, that’s interesting, but it’s worth noting that Romero hasn’t had the greatest luck with zombie movies lately.
Either way, we’ll keep you posted with any new developments as they come in.