The most expensive zombie movie ever made. Sounds funny, doesn’t it? But if you’ve been following the trials and tribulations of World War Z, it’s no surprise that it is indeed history the most expensive zombie movie ever, possibly more than every George Romero undead flick combined.
Indeed, Entertainment Weekly confirms that World War Z is the most expensive zombie movie ever, which shows how insane Hollywood budgets have gotten. (The original Dawn of the Dead cost about $1.5 million with all real extras, no hordes of zombies added in with CGI.) And even with World War Z being a big best-seller, it remains to be seen if the finished film is going to deliver, or be a big budget train wreck.
According to EW, Z was originally budgeted at $125 million, and went up to $170 million. Brad Pitt, who outbid everyone on the property and who is starring as well as producing, claimed the movie already had "a fantastic preview" and "the whole experience has given me respect for this kind of [F/X-heavy] filmmaking. These movies are very intricate puzzles, and you have to keep winding the mechanisms and then trigger them all at just the right time."
Pitt is certainly putting a brave face on all this, playing down problems he’s had with director Marc Forster, inviting writer Geoff Boucher in the editing room while they were working together, even though reports had it they stopped speaking to each other during the shoot. (The Hollywood Reporter also wrote that the film’s director of photography, Robert Richardson, wanted to leave the shoot as well).
This report also tells us that when Damon Lindelof was brought in for an eleventh hour re-write on the film, usually not a good sign, he needed a partner to help him through, and Drew Goddard, director of Cabin in the Woods, came aboard. Not to mention that most of the film’s footage shot in Budapest is gone from the film.
So we’ll find out soon enough if this was all worth it on June 21 when World War Z is out in theaters everywhere. It has definitely had its share of hurtles to get over, and one of the biggest is you can get amazing zombies on TV for free with Walking Dead. Z definitely has its work cut out for it in having to compete with that show, and we’re taking a wait and see attitude if it can really deliver a truly epic undead story. The original Dawn of the Dead was definitely the one to beat in this regard at the end of the 70’s, so good luck to the World War Z gang in trying to make the modern day equivalent.