George Romero

Early Life

George Romero

George A. Romero was born in NYC, New York in 1940. He grew up in NY until he left for Pittsburgh, PA to attend college. After graduation he took his first step into film, making short films and commercials. Wanting to create full-length features, Romero and some friends formed Image Ten Productions toward the end of the 1960's. His first film was Night of the Living Dead (1968). Made for only $100,000 it breathed new life, inadvertently, into the horror genre and completely changed the zombie film. His next films, The Crazies (1973) and Martin (1978) were not as successful. But like NOTLD included the trademark theme of examining societal issues in a horror setting.

In 1978, Romero followed up NOTLD with Dawn of the Dead, after separating himself from Image Ten. The movie was filmed in the Monroeville Mall near Pittsburgh, PA and cost $1.5 Million to make. It would gross $40 Million worldwide. The movie also brought about the first interaction between Romero and special effects artist Tom Savini. They would go on to collaborate on several other films.

The success of Dawn of the Dead rewarded him with bigger budgets and better casts. His next films would be Knightriders (1981) and Creepshow (1982) where he worked with horror novelist Stephen King. He returned to the zombie genre in 1985 with Day of the Dead, however it was panned by critics and was no where near the financial success of its predecessor. Twenty years later he created Land of the Dead (2005), a further insight into the qualms of society in an apocalyptic universe where humans and zombies live inharmoniously. Following its success he directed Diary of the Dead (2008) and Survival of the Dead (2010). He lived out his days in Toronto, Canada, sadly passing away at 77 on July 16, 2017.

Movies Known For

The Night of the Living Dead (1968) The Crazies (1973) Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Creepshow (1982) Day of the Dead (1985) Land of the Dead (2005)

BrainDid You Know?

NOTLD was added to the National Film Registry of the Library of Congress.

He never received royalties from NOTLD because of failing to secure a copyright on the film.

He was originally set to direct Pet Sematary (1989).

He didn't like The Walking Dead. He described it as "a soap opera with a zombie occasionally."

He became a Canadian citizen after moving to Toronto in 2009.

He cited Orson Welles as an influence.

He started making movies at 14 with an 8mm camera.

He worked as a page-boy on North By Northwest (1959). He later claimed to had been unimpressed by Hitchcock's directing style.

His favorite film of those he directed was Martin (1978).