See that headline? It literally makes me nauseated. Ever since I worked with George on Survival of the Dead, he has told me his glorious plans for what he wanted to do with the next Dead film. Since nobody saw me take a headshot, I told him I was in! So now a bit of the aforementioned plans are out there with a sickening caveat…
During an interview with Indiewire, Romero let it all fly in typical Romero fashion.
“I did Land of the Dead, which was the biggest zombie film I had ever made,” Romero tells the site. “I don’t think it needed to be that big. That money went largely to the cast. They were great, but I don’t think that money needed to be spent. Dennis Hopper’s cigar budget cost more than the entire production of Night of the Living Dead. That’s the way it is.”
“Now, because of World War Z and ‘The Walking Dead,’ I can’t pitch a modest little zombie film which is meant to be sociopolitical. I used to be able to pitch them on the basis of the zombie action, and I could hide the message inside that. Now you can’t. The moment you mention the word ‘zombie,’ it’s got to be, ‘Hey, Brad Pitt paid $400 million to do that.’”
So, what is the plan for the next film?
“In 2007, Diary of the Dead all of a sudden made money. I was [blind-sided] by that. One of the producers said, ‘Let’s make another one quick.’ I didn’t know what else I could talk about. Diary of the Dead talked about how social media is haunting us today. I didn’t have anything else to talk about. So I decided to go back to the original premise of misunderstanding and people not being able to see each other’s point of view. I said I’ll do this one as a western and the next one as a noir. So [I] did the western, nobody liked it, and the other one fell away. Then, all of a sudden, here came ‘The Walking Dead.’ So you couldn’t make a zombie film that had any sort of substance. It had to be a zombie film with just zombies wreaking havoc. That’s not what I’m about.”
And that’s why we love you so much, George. We’ll all keep our fingers crossed because honestly, this cannot and should not stand.