These days, it seems that everything is all about zombies. Okay, maybe not everything, but there is no way zombie fiction would be as popular as it is today were it not for the work of Hollywood legend George A. Romero, who passed away on the 17th of July. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead films helped to launch a genre and changed horror and science fiction forever. Before Romero, zombies weren’t really a thing. Frankenstein’s Monster was pretty much the end-all-be-all of “zombies” until the dead truly began to walk and munch on brains. Now, after Romero’s death, Robert Kirkman, the creator of The Walking Dead has created a moving tribute.
As we are now in an age where zombies are a part of the public lexicon with such shows as The Walking Dead, Fear the Walking Dead and movies like Zombieland and countless others, it’s worth nothing that they pretty much wouldn’t exist without George Romero. The famed Canadian-American director gave us Night of the Living Dead way back in 1968, and it was not only ground breaking for introducing the zombie genre, but also made his zombie films talk about various issues hidden within their layers: race relations, consumerism, and militarism. The famed director is responsible for other horror gems like The Crazies, Creepshow, Monkey Shines, and the subsequent zombie sequels: Dawn of the Dead, Day of the Dead, Land of the Dead, Diary of the Dead, and Survival of the Dead.
John Carpenter is a name and a man who is quite synonymous with the horror genre. He’s directed some of the the finest films in horror such as Halloween, The Fog, and The Thing. So whenever the man speaks up about anything regarding the genre, people tend to perk up and listen. When asked about his opinion regarding one of televisions biggest, horror hits, The Walking Dead, he basically referred to the show as a rip-off, and one that has been milked for a long time.
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. (more…)
If you like The Walking Dead or any of the 100 things about people fighting to survive the zombie apocalypse, from The Last of Us to the upcoming Scout’s Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse, thank George A. Romero. The filmmaking legend created modern zombies in 1968 with Night of the Living Dead, and has enjoyed a long and varied career in horror movies ever since. Now making his home in Toronto, Romero was given a hero’s welcome Friday afternoon at Fan Expo, as fans probed all aspects of his filmography. (more…)
While only the true hardcore zombie fans know his name, it’s safe to say even casual fans of the genre know his face and his place in zombie movie history. Bill Hinzman, the man who first shuffled his way on screen as they very first flesh eater in George A. Romero‘s original 1968 Night of the Living Dead, passed away over the weekend at the age of 75.
Lovingly remembered as the Graveyard Zombie, Hinzman locked his place in the cinema of the undead when he staggered on screen towards brother and sister Barbara and Johnny, maintained it by further work with Romero on movies like There’s Always Vanilla, Season of the Witch and The Crazies and secured his legend by being a fixture of the convention circuit. As Dread Central puts it, “Bill was always there with a smile for fans, often appearing in costume as the famed ghoul we all grew up with.”
Nerd Bastards would like to offer our sincerest condolences to the friends and family of Mr. Hinzman, R.I.P. Zombie #1, you will be missed.
If you want to relive his iconic first performance, I have it cued up for you after the jump.
With all of the attention the zombie movie genre has received lately, the godfather of the undead has to step up with something soon. George Romero, the man that is credited with creating and perfecting the zombie movie (we aren’t counting ‘Land of the Dead‘ btw) recently revealed what his next project will be and what it won’t be.
The Zombie Autopsies, a book written by his friend Steve Schlozman, is a medical drama about a team of doctors searching for a cure in the middle of an undead epidemic (apparently something beyond bullets and chainsaws, bummer). Romero is currently hard at work on the screenplay:
“This is Steve’s story, not mine. It’s more like The Andromeda Strain. It’s very tense and very medically correct. This guy’s a doctor, it’s all about being medically correct. I think about it like the first Hammer Frankenstein film, which was all about very graphic scenes of brains floating in blood and things like that. I want it to be perfectly accurate, almost shockingly so.”
If there is anyone that can make it work, I am thinking Romero can. If you’ve seen his last couple of movies, Diary of the Dead and Survival of the Dead, both low budget gems, you’ve seen that he still wants to push the envelope and flesh out (PUN!) the zombie film experience.
If you’ve had all your hopes and dreams pinned on the king of the zombie movies sitting in the directors chair for an episode or two of The Walking Dead, well… you might want to sit down.
“I love the books, I haven’t seen any of the episodes. Listen I love Frank [Darabont], I know he’s done a good job. I love the books, I never watched any of the episodes because… my zombies are sort of my own. I didn’t want to be part of it. Producers called and said, “do you want to direct some of these,” and I said no. Because I just didn’t think it was me.”
The fact that he name dropped the now fired Darabont officially puts it in the ‘not going to happen’ box, can’t say I am upset be that either. Romero’s best work is when he is as far away from studio executives as possible, his element is the alternative and the obscure. I think this hard science medical drama, The Zombie Autopsies, is something to look forward to. Just George, if you are reading this… just one chainsaw kill, please? It’d mean the world to a fan like me.
Know those bonus zombie killin’ levels in Call of Duty: World at War? Ya, they are amazeballs and fans have gone ape shit over them since their inception.
The bar was raised even higher when Treyarch took over and turned the Call of Duty: Black Ops zombie levels into fan favorite hits as well. Zombies simply make everything better.
Now Treyarch is at it again. With the upcoming expansion map pack entitled Escalation, it will feature four new maps and yet another awesome zombie level named Call of the Dead. This isn’t just some normal, run-of-the-mill style run-and-gun like the franchise’s previous installments. This new level will have star power the previous one’s never had. Yes, playing as Richard Nixon was nice and all but pulling a Left for Dead move with Hollywood stars Robert Englund, Sarah Michelle Gellar, Michael Rooker and Danny Trejo just makes all that spewing brain matter really worth it.
How does Hollywood taste?
Going all out to create their own special experience for the players before this new map pack drops next week, May 3rd, Treyarch called in the big guns. Not only did they emulate the grindhouse style, bringing back the voice over and ‘coming attractions’ opener, but they’ve brought in the grandfather of the zombie movie and have George Romero as a special zombie type. It’s their use of 45 Grave’s ‘Do You Want to Party?’that really sells what they’re making, maps that’s fun for all ages (with parental permission of course). Who cares if the song comes from Return of the Living Dead, a film directed by Romero’s estranged producing partner John Russo. This still kicks more ass then Werewolf women of the S S, Nicholas Cage as Fu Manchu I’d rather watch Drive Angry 3D again.
Call of Duty:Black Ops-Escalation is avaible for X-Box live users May 3rd but Playstation users will have to wait another for another month until they can play as Buffy all weekend long.