Sadly it has been a while since we’ve seen a George Romero zombie movie and even worse, I’m not sure we’ll ever see another. Various things seem to be the cause of that.
Speaking with Indiewire, Romero just provided some insight into his struggle.
“I did Land of the Dead, which was the biggest zombie film I had ever made,” Romero recalled. “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,” he continued. “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.’”
What kind of zombie movie would Romero make, if he could get funding?
“In 2007, Diary of the Dead all of a sudden made money. I was blind-sighted by that. One of the producers said, ‘Let’s make another one quick.’ I didn’t know what else I could talk about,” said the godfather of zombie cinema. “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 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.”