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Difference between revisions of "George A. Romero"

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'''George Andrew Romero''' (born 4 February, 1940) is an American director, writer, editor and actor. He is best known for his Dead Series, a tetralogy of horror movies with a [[zombie]] [[apocalypse]] theme and which are known for providing a commentary on contemporary society.

He was born and raised in New York City, and attended Pittsburgh's Carnegie Mellon University. After quitting university, he began shooting mostly short films and commercials. He and friends formed Image Ten Productions in the late 1960s, and they chipped in roughly $10,000 apiece to produce what became one of the most celebrated horror films of all time: ''[[Night of the Living Dead]]'' (1968). The movie, directed by Romero and co-written with John A. Russo, became a cult classic in the 1970s. Romero updated his original screenplay and was executive producer of the remake of ''Night of the Living Dead'' directed by Tom Savini for Columbia/Tristar in 1990.
Romero's next films were less popular: ''There's Always Vanilla'' (1971), ''Season of the Witch'' (1972) and ''The Crazies'' (1973). Though not as acclaimed as ''Night of the Living Dead'' or some of his later work, these films had his signature social commentary while dealing with issues (usually horror-related) at the microscopic level. ''The Crazies'', about a biospill that creates madness, and the critically acclaimed and arthouse success ''Martin'' (1976), a film that strikingly deconstructs the [[vampire]] myth, were the two standout efforts during this period. Like almost all of his films, they were shot in or around Romero's favorite city of Pittsburgh.
In 1978, Romero returned to the [[zombie]] genre with ''Dawn of the Dead'' (1978).  Shot on a budget of just $1.5 million, the film earned over $55 million worldwide and was named one of the top cult films by ''Entertainment Weekly'' in 2003.
==1980s - present day==
Romero made a third entry in his "Dead Series" with ''Day of the Dead'' (1985), although this was less popular at the box office.
During this time, Romero also made ''Knightriders'' (1981), another festival favorite about a group of modern-day jousters who re-enact tournaments on motorcycles, and the successful ''Creepshow'' (1982), written by [[Stephen King]], an anthology of tongue-in-cheek tales that were modeled after 1950s horror comics.
Throughout the latter half of the 1980s and 90s, Romero made various films, including ''Monkey Shines '' (1988) about a killer monkey; ''Due occhi diabolici - Two Evil Eyes'' (1990), an [[Edgar Allan Poe]] adaptation in collaboration with Dario Argento; the [[Stephen King]] adaptation ''The Dark Half'' (1992); and ''Bruiser'' (2000), about a man whose face becomes a blank mask.
Romero had a cameo appearance in Jonathan Demme's Academy Award-winning ''The Silence of the Lambs'' in 1991 as one of Hannibal Lecter's jailers.
Universal Studios produced and released a remake of ''Dawn of the Dead'' in 2004, in which Romero was not involved (though he expressed admiration for the Zack Snyder film in a graphic novel adaptation of the remake). Later that year, Romero kicked off the DC Comics title ''Toe Tags'' with a six-issue miniseries titled ''The Death of Death''. Based on an unused script that Romero had previously written as a sequel to his "Dead Trilogy", the comic miniseries concerns Damien, an intelligent zombie who remembers his former life, struggling to find his identity as he battles armies of both the living and the dead. Typical of a Romero zombie tale, the miniseries includes ample supply of both gore and social commentary (dealing particularly here with corporate greed and terrorism - ideas he would also explore in his next film in the series, ''Land of the Dead''). Romero has stated that the miniseries takes place in the same world as his "Dead" films, only emphasising other places in the world besides Pittsburgh, where the majority of his films take place ([| link]).
Romero, who still lives in Pittsburgh, recently completed a fourth "Dead" movie, ''Land of the Dead'' (formerly known as ''Dead Reckoning''), in Toronto, Ontario, with a $16 million production budget (the highest in Romero's career). Actors Dennis Hopper, Asia Argento and John Leguizamo star in the film. It was released on June 24, 2005.
Some critics have seen social commentary in much of Romero's work. They view ''Night of the Living Dead'' as a film made as a reaction to the turbulent 1960s, ''Dawn of the Dead'' as a satire on consumerism, ''Day of the Dead'' as a study of the conflict between science and the military, and ''Land of the Dead'' as an examination of class conflict.
Romero is married to Christine Forrest, whom he met on the set of ''Season of the Witch''.  They have two children together.
# ''Night of the Living Dead'', 1968
# ''There's Always Vanilla'', 1971
# ''The Crazies'', 1973
# ''Season of the Witch'', 1973
# ''The Winners'', 1973 TV Series
# ''O.J. Simpson: Juice on the Loose'', 1974
# ''Martin'', 1976
# ''Dawn of the Dead'', 1978
# ''Knightriders'', 1981
# ''Creepshow'', 1982
# ''Tales from the Darkside'', 1984 TV Series
# ''Day of the Dead'' 1985
# ''Monkey Shines'' 1988
# ''Due occhi diabolici - Two Evil Eyes'', 1990
# ''The Dark Half'', 1993
# ''Bruiser]]'', 2000
# ''Land of the Dead'', 2005
# ''Dawn of the Dead'' (with Susan Sparrow; movie tie-in), 1979
# ''Martin'' (with Susan Sparrow; movie tie-in), 1984
# ''Toe Tags'' #1-6 (''The Death of Death''; DC Comics), 2004 - 2005
==External links focusing on Romero==
*[ New York Times bio]
*[ Classic bio]
*[ Interviewed by Bizarre magazine]
*[ Hollywood Gothique: George Romero on "Raising the Dead"]
==External links specific to the "Dead" films==
*[ Homepage of the Dead] - The Ultimate GAR Dead Movies Fan Site
*[ Quadrilogy of the dead] <!-- Wrongly named ('Quadrilogy' isn't a real word.) --> Fansite about the Dead Tetralogy.
*[ Nihilism and the Walking Dead] - Article on how Romero's "Dead trilogy" portray a struggle between active and passive nihilism.

Revision as of 03:45, 18 April 2007