According to Shocktillyoudrop.com, Danielle Harris (Halloween II) has been cast in Night of the Living Dead: Origins, an expansion of George A. Romero's 1968 landmark horror movie. Harris left a message on her Twitter feed announcing she had landed one of the principle female roles.
The new movie, due in 2011, will apparently be a 3-D version that expands upon the original characters. Zebediah de Soto, who co-wrote the script and will be in the director's chair, is calling it "an American-style anime."
Okay, we're not sure what that means. We're also not sure why Romero's classic needs yet another remake, especially by someone with no features to his credit. But we'll just have to wait and see what the final product is like.
Writer-director Zebediah De Soto isn't the first person to remake Night of the Living Dead, he's just the latest. When George Romero created his zombie classic in 1968, copyright indications were left off of prints, putting the movie into public domain, which is why the movie has been subject to so many revisions and remakes.
Make-up effects guru Tom Savini remade the movie in color in 1990. A low-budget 3-D version was made in 2006, and now De Soto wants to make a CGI-heavy Night of the Living Dead, again in 3-D, that he describes as an "American-style anime." De Soto tried to settle the fears of zombie fans concerned with yet another remake in an interview with ShockTillYouDrop, explaining that his "expansion" of the original will not destroy what Romero originally created.
I know so many people get pissed off about this movie being redone again, but it's not the same regurgitated bulls**t. We're taking this seriously. I loved Romero's movie and there are so many people out there raping it to death, I didn't want to be next in line to the gang bang. But I really wanted to do something that was a little creative but an homage to what he was doing. I want to see a zombie movie on the scale of [the Max Brooks novel] World War Z and the only thing I changed in terms of the terrain is that we go into New York City. This is a post-9/11 world we live in and how would people react to this if it really happened? How would they respond? For me, one of the things missing from zombie films is effects done on a level no one has ever seen before like Spider-Man or The Hulk. Those effects applied to a zombie film.
And how will the effects De Soto use impact the outcome?
[Origins] lends itself more to the movie 9 in that I want this to look like a living painting. The only thing that ever came close to that idea is Zack Snyder's 300 but this is a bit more stylized than that. I originally came from comic books and I was a graphic artist for nine or ten years. I always wanted to see something like this.
The considerable amount of CGI might help De Soto pull off some of his ideas for the movie.
I want to see a helicopter clipping its propeller on a building and careening into a crowd of people. Zombies going through the streets. A thousand people tearing each other apart, zombies tearing them apart, total chaos. [In the original] they were always describing these really big scenes, like Ben says a truck is chased down by a horde of zombies. I always wished I could have seen that.
De Soto has already cast Danielle Harris as Barbara, and is close to bringing in Mos Def to play Ben. De Soto says they have made the actor an offer and are waiting to hear back. "We'll see," said De Soto.
Night of the Living Dead: Origins is currently in production. De Soto and producer Simon West are eying a 2010 release date.
Halloween is nearly here — that time of the year where we don frightening costumes and eat way too much candy. And as movie lovers, there's no better time to turn our viewing attention to the horror genre. This weekend there are plenty of movies to choose from. Way too many — 50 plus, by our count. From that mix, our staff horror maven has picked your 10 best viewing (or DVR) bets.
It isn't often that a zombie movie rules the box office, but that's just what Warm Bodies did earlier this month, easily winning its opening weekend, joining the ranks of zombie movies like 2004's Dawn of the Dead, 2009's Zombieland and the four Resident Evil sequels, which all achieved the same distinction. With The Walking Dead returning to TV with record ratings and World War Z arriving this summer to show what Brad Pitt can do against the zombie apocalypse, it's clear that zombies are as relevant as ever in the pop culture zeitgeist, and are determined to only evolve further.
It might be easy to dismiss zombies as mindless, killing machines (and they are that, too), but over their long history, zombies have also figured out how to move, how to talk, and, in the case of Warm Bodies, how to love again. For a full history of the evolution of zombies in movies, we only ask that you have 8 hours to spare.
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