On the heels of the announcement earlier this week that a 3D Night of the Living Dead remake is in the works (read that story here) comes news that the original NOTLD has been restored, colorized, and converted, frame by frame, into full 3D and will premiere at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles on Saturday, October 3, 2009, as a part of the 5th Annual Johnny Ramone Tribute.
San Diego-based 3D producer PassmoreLab is behind the process, which took over 12 months to complete at a cost greater than the film’s original production budget and was no small feat. “I am a huge fan of this movie, and so it had to be done with complete precision,” said Greg Passmore, president of PassmoreLab. “We love the genre, and as cult classics go, this is mother of them all. If you are going to convert a horror classic, this is the one you want to see in 3D.”
As for the tie-in with Ramone, “Johnny was a huge horror movie buff, and ‘Night of the Living Dead’ was one of his top ten horror film favorites of all time. We’ve started a tradition screening some of Johnny’s favorite movies, paired in a double feature with vintage Ramones concerts, each year at the annual tribute,” said John Cafiero, Chief of Staff of the Johnny Ramone Army. “We are working with PassmoreLab on another project, and it was just great timing and a perfect fit to show ‘Night of the Living Dead 3D’ for the very first time at the tribute. You couldn’t ask for a better setting … It’s going to be spectacular.”
Johnny inspired generations of punk bands until his untimely death from prostate cancer in 2004, at age 55. His annual tribute takes place at the foot of his 8-foot memorial bronze statue inside the Hollywood Forever Cemetery.
“Johnny felt this movie was shot amazingly and looked genuinely scary,” said Linda Ramone, wife of the legendary guitarist. “He would have been thrilled that the 3D version of the original ‘Night of the Living Dead’ had its world premiere at his tribute. He loved horror movies and he loved the polarized 3D exhibits, so experiencing one of his favorite films that way is something Johnny would have really enjoyed. It’s perfect for the event.”
The World Premiere of Night of the Living Dead 3D and the Johnny Ramone Tribute event are open to the public for a $10 per person minimum donation entrance fee with net proceeds benefiting the Johnny Ramone research fund at USC Westside Prostate Cancer Center lead by Dr. David Agus. Gates for the event will open at 5:30pm, and picnic dinners, drinks (including alcohol), pillows, blankets, and small chairs are permitted. Attendees of the event will get free commemorative 3D glasses upon entering.
Celebrity guest speakers will be in attendance, and autograph signings will be scheduled with sole surviving founding member, Ramones drummer and producer Tommy Ramone, and youngest member CJ Ramone. Rare memorabilia will be exhibited along with an art show (curated by Barbara Ramone) of original paintings by the legendary Ramones bassist Dee Dee Ramone, who will receive special homage at the event as well. Opening featurettes include animated music videos from the Johnny Ramone Army and Osaka Popstar, presented for the first time anywhere in 3D by PassmoreLab. The evening concludes with a vintage Ramones concert shot in 1977 entitled “Its Alive” and the world premiere of Night of the Living Dead 3D.
Night of the Living Dead 3D can be seen in selected US theatres and in wide release in 3D theaters in Europe, starting in October. It will be available in anaglyph DVD on Amazon.com by Christmas, and a 3D TV version will be available when 3D Blu-ray becomes commercially available.
For more information about the Johnny Ramone Army and tribute, visit JohnnyRamone.com. And for more information regarding directions to the event, parking, and screening rules, visit the Hollywood Forever Cemetery site.
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