Dawn of the Dead (1978)
Background: Dawn of the Dead is probably the single most influential zombie movie in modern cinema. Directed by George Romero in 1977 with an April 1979 US release date. George Romero not only was able to develop unique and extremely interesting characters, but he was able to drive home a social commentary around modern human consumerism and its impact in our world.
Dawn of the Dead is probably the single most influential zombie movie in modern cinema. Directed by George Romero in 1977 with an April 1979 US release date. George Romero not only was able to develop unique and extremely interesting characters, but he was able to drive home a social commentary around modern human consumerism and its impact in our world.
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US Release Date NYC:
US Release Date LA:
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The movie was shot over a period of about four months between 30 September 1977 and 8 March 1978
The majority of the filming taking place at the Monroeville Mall, Monroeville, Pennsylvania
$650,000 Total (estimated)
$250,000 Dario Argento investing almost half
1 September 1978
20 April 1979
11 May 1979
Dawn of the Dead has received a number of re-cuts and re-edits, due mostly to Dario Argento’s rights to edit the film for international foreign language release. Romero controlled the final cut of the film for English-language territories. In addition, the film was edited further by censors or distributors in certain countries. Romero, acting as the editor for his film, completed a hasty 139-minute version of the film (now known as the Extended, or Director’s, Cut) for premiere at the 1978 Cannes Film Festival. This was later pared down to 126 minutes for the U.S. theatrical release. In an era before the NC-17 rating was available from the Motion Picture Association of America, the US theatrical cut of the film earned the taboo rating of X from the association because of its graphic violence. Rejecting this rating, Romero and the producers chose to release the film unrated so as to help the film’s commercial success.
Dario Argento’s European Theatrical 118 minute release was a much different edit and take on the film. This version of the film removed much of the character development in order to keep with a faster paced movie threaded with action and gore. With Germany banning most graphic movies such as this one, Oliver Krekel, owner of the german DVD company, Astro, released a 156 minute ultimate final cut in January 2008 which added an additional 16 minutes to the Cannes cut, also known as the Extended Mall Hours cut. This addition add additional dialog between Peter and Roger, zombie head shot sequences and additional dialog during the Biker raid.