George A. Romero made a name for himself in the horror zombie genre years ago when he created Night of The Living Dead and its subsequent sequels. In more recent years, however, he's been less keen about zombie dramas, and over the past couple of years he's spoken out about the state of zombie movies in a negative way. As it turns out, it may not be zombie movies that are the only thing incurring George A Romero's wrath. In fact, he recently stated that The Walking Dead might in fact be responsible for the downfall of the types of projects he likes to make. Here's what he had to say:
Then, all of a sudden, here came The Walking Dead. So you couldn't do a zombie film that had any sort of substance. It had to be a zombie film with just zombies wreaking havoc. That's not what I'm about.
Speaking to Indiewire, George A. Romero revealed that when he pitched Night of the Living Dead the story was more about the underlying message of miscommunication than it was about zombies in general. Years later, he says he believes that the downfall in the zombie genre comes from The Walking Dead, which has always been pretty gory and violent series thanks to its timeslot and the cable network, AMC, it airs on. He didn't stop there with his anger towards the likes of TWD, either. He also said:
Now, because of World War Z and The Walking Dead, I can't pitch a modest little zombie film, which is meant to be sociopolitical. I used to be able to pitch them on the basis of the zombie action, and I could hide the message inside that. Now, you can't. The moment you mention the word zombie, it's got to be, 'Hey, Brad Pitt paid $400 million to do that.'
Sure, World War Z especially was a pretty big production, but The Walking Dead in its earliest incarnation was still a cheaper production for AMC than your average TV series, one that reportedly even faced budget cuts early on. The AMC drama has also been just as much about the economics of survival in a world that has turned upside down thanks to an epidemic as it has been about the violent results in the aftermath. No one would argue that The Walking Dead is a bag of laughs---at least not most weeks---but it does try to show different angles of the zombie crisis, even if it's not always a story within a story like what Romero has allegedly been trying to do during his long and storied horror career.
The Walking Dead just kicked off its seventh season a few days ago, and while it may not be George A. Romero's cup of tea, it's certainly a show that is extremely popular. Ratings for the latest season have been pretty darn good, and the show doesn't look as if it will be going anywhere anytime soon. You can catch new episodes on Sunday nights at 9 p.m. ET. To find out what is coming up on the drama, head here.