Remembering George A. Romero by Ron Purtee


Before I looked at George as a hero, he was the man responsible for the bone chilling fears that I had when I was young.

When I saw my first horror film at 7, it wasn’t by choice. I saw about 90 seconds of Texas Chain Saw Massacre and was instantly hooked. So as days went by I would go out of my way to try and see any horror that would come into my house. So basically anything Mom would rent from the video store. A steady of stream of slashers. From Freddy to Jason and beyond.

The one thing that I remember very vividly would be a trailer for Dawn of the Dead on VHS.

The voice over, the scenes of the mall and the SWAT team’s attack on the apartment building combined with the music sent a chill down my spine that a man with finger knives never could. I knew true fear.

Cut to years later I had seen every zombie picture that George had made and it fashioned my horror world. When it came time to make my first horror film, I knew it had to be a zombie flick. Re-watching all of his films over and over and over again had taught me that you can tell a deeper story and use the zombies as a metaphor, and Becoming Undead was born.

If it wasn’t for George Romero, there wouldn’t be a me. Im sure you are hearing and seeing that a lot from people, but its because it’s true. He shaped so many of us who make film and we will never be able to repay him. For that, my heart breaks.

Thank you, George. For everything.

– Ron Purtee

George a Romero - Remembering George A. Romero by Ron Purtee



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