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El Weekender

No 76

February 4, 1940- July 16, 2017 (aged 77)

“We are Them, and They’re Us”

A quote that leaves you to reflect on yourself and those around you. Whispered in disbelief by Barbra, (Patricia Tallman) as she noticed “zombies” being hung by their feet and shot for sport by a group of rowdy, drunken men. Night of the Living Dead, a film by George A. Romero, while it was about grey eyed, brainless cannibals whose only desire was human flesh, his movies always had a deeper meaning. The original 1968 black & white version of Night of the Living Dead, shocked audiences as it was the first-time zombies walked the big screen, and the first time a Black Actor played a lead as the fearless hero. George A. Romero, could see the serious problem with the racism and sexism that has been sewed into the fabric of American society since the original 13 colonies were founded. He used the walking dead as a backdrop to showcase these issues.

Born in the Bronx, as a young man, Romero had an eye for filmmaking, he says that his “Rich Uncle” gave him a video camera, and that was when he made his first few films. However, his outlook on filmmaking being a lifelong career was quite comical. In a 1982 interview he explained, “I never thought of filmmaking seriously, I always thought movies were made by elves at the North Pole.” Nonetheless, he would go on to make history as the “Godfather of the Dead”.  He directed, wrote, and edited numerous films such as, Night of the Living Dead ’68’& 90, Dawn of the Dead, Tales from the Darkside, Creepshow, Diary of the Dead, and so much more.

George A. Romero did not produce your basic horror films, his movies were created with serious consideration for his audience. I will admit, since the age of seven, I watched Romero’s horror films. I will never forget the excitement I had when the once frantic helpless character, from the original 1968 version of Night of the Living Dead transformed into the headstrong, bada** Barbra who wouldn’t let a few lame brain zombies get in her way of surviving the “outbreak”. I am sure most horror movie lovers would agree when I say Romero’s films were some if the best parts of our childhood and could not imagine a world without his remarkable influence. Sadly, George A. Romero passed away due to complications from Lung Cancer. According to a statement by his longtime producing partner, Peter Grunwald, Romero died while listening to the score of one of his favorite films, The Quiet Man, with his wife, Suzanne Desrocher Romero, and daughter, Tina Romero, at his side.


-Anderson, Tre'Vell (July 16, 2017). "George A. Romero, 'Night of the Living Dead' creator, dies at 77". Retrieved July 19, 2017.

-Romero, G., Williams, T., & Ebrary, Inc. (2011). George A. Romero : Interviews(Conversations with filmmakers series). Jackson: University Press of Mississippi.



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