'World War Z' And 'Warm Bodies' Signals Rise Of Zombie Films

 @Justine__Ashley on November 09 2012 12:57 PM

The unwavering popularity of AMC's "Walking Dead" and the success of "Hotel Transylvania" and the latest "Resident Evil" instalment are indicative of a collecive fascination with the undead. 

Within the past few months, the amimated film "Hotel Transylvania" earned $138 million while "Resident Evil Retribution," the fifth film in the hit series, went on to earn roughly $200 million worldwide. The films are the first of several zombie movies set to devour eager ticketholders' dollars over the next several months.

The comedy "Warm Bodies" follows a a romance between a zombie (Nicholas Holt) and a human woman (Teresa Palmer). Directed by Jonathan Levine, ("50/50"), the film is scheduled to premiere in February 2013. 

The upcoming apocalyptic drama "World War Z" follows a United Nations worker (Brad Pitt)  who struggles to protect his family during a zombie outbreak. The film, set to debut next June, is based on the popular 2006 novel by Max Brooks. 

"R.I.P.D.," based on the comic book "Dark Horse," will debut at the start of summer blockbuster season. The film centers on a murdered cop (Ryan Reynolds) that joins the undead ring go the police department. Set to premiere next June, the dark comedy also stars Kevin Bacon and Jeff Bridges. 

A 3D animated retelling of the 1968 George Romero horror classic "Night of the Living Dead" is slated to hit theaters next year. The film was previously remade in 1990 and 2006. 

Earlier this year, rumors of a possible "Zombieland" sequel surfaced. According to NBC, a followup script to the hit Ruben Fletcher spoof has been completed. But despite reports that the film's original cast, including Jesse Eisenberg, Woody Harrelson, and Emma Stone are set to reprise their roles, the film has yet to begin production, and no definitive plans have been announced. 

A film adaptation of the 2009 Jane Austen parody novel "Pride and Prejudice and Zombies," is also purportedly in the pipeline as is a film version of the comic book series "Zombies vs. Robots." 

Others upcoming films dealing with the undead include Sam Rami's remake of his 1981 cult hit "Evil Dead" and "The 4th Reich," which tells the story of the takedown of the Nazi regime in Western Europe with a zombie twist. 

Though they seem to be growing in popularity, zombie films have been a prevelant part of cinematic history since the 1920 release of Robert Wiene's "The Cabinet of Dr. Caligari." 

Since then, movies like Romero's 1978 thriller "Dawn of the Dead," Danny Boyle's critcally acclaimed 2002 "28 Days Later," and the 2007 Francis Lawrence film "I Am Legend" remain some of the most popular films of all time.

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