Articles & Notes — November 16, 2012 at 11:58 pm

George A. Romero – sad times for “The Godfather of Zombies”

George A. Romero is one of the most influential horror movie filmmakers, who paved the way for pretty much any other filmmaker who started doing “zombie horror movies” after 1968.

However lately, “The Godfather of Zombies” as Romero is sometimes called, has not been doing very good.

There is of course hope that he will eventually bounce back and make a couple of more zombie films before his time runs out. And many believe that Romero still has a lot left in him.

Speaking of the failures, there were some. First one did not involve Romero directly, but nonetheless it was an unpleasant moment for his fans.

In October, the “Zombie Research Society” tried to raise money via an online campaign, to get Romero his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. This initiative was eventually shut down by the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce.

“Zombie Research Society” was up to raising $30,000 that would be enough to pay for the Star, however a protest came from the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce, and the campaign was shut down.

The founder of the “Zombie Research Society” Matt Mogk said the Chamber shut down the campaign because the news about “buying a Star for 30,000” was spreading around.

Romero reportedly did not make any statements on this, probably doing the right thing. In any case, the campaign is unlikely to be resumed any time soon, and the godfather of all American zombie movies so far remains without his star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Then, in late October, Romero spoke to Fangoria in an interview, and revealed that he doesn’t really like any movies that have been coming out recently. He did name one – “DollHouse”, which he saw in Sweden at a film festival.

Aside from that, Romero doesn’t even seem to like the “Walking Dead” series, according to Big Hollywood, that spoke to the legendary horror director in early November.

Romero said that he didn’t like the “Walking Dead” series, adding that the “Zombieland” film is just a “shoot-em up”.

Romero has been far from a “working director”, as he only made four movies in 12 years (2000-2012).

The last one, “Survival of the Dead”, was not favored by many zombie film fans, and Romero himself admitted that the film simply did not make enough money.

According to BoxOfficeMojo, “Survival of the Dead” could gather only $143,191 worldwide ($101,740 – domestic gross, $41,451 – foreign gross), while being made for $4 million. Judging by the numbers – that’s quite a let down for Romero.

Between 2000 and 2012, Romero’s “Land of the Dead” has had the best run in the theaters, as being made for $15 million, the film gathered a worldwide gross of $46,770,602 ($20,700,082 – domestic gross, $26,070,520 – foreign gross). But that was in 2005. Today, Romero seems to be struggling to get money from investors for another zombie movie.

“The financiers that did ‘Survival of the Dead’ were waiting to put money into a new one, and I had a script started, but it just didn’t happen,” Romero told Big Hollywood.

Romero also said that for him it is important to have a message in a zombie film, or in other words – a “zombie movie must have brains”.

“I always have CNN on. That’s where I get my ideas,” he told Big Hollywood. “If I’m gonna do another [zombie movie], it has to start there.”

Whether Romero’s next film will “start there” or not, remains to be seen. The fans online have been expressing various opinions – some say Romero should step aside and let the newcomers add something of their own to the zombie genre, others believe Romero can still make another film, and they will go and see it regardless of how they felt about “Survival of the Dead”.

Well, another zombie film for Romero or not, he can always make something else, not necessarily a zombie movie. “Bruiser 2”, anyone?

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