Series: “The Walking Dead” (first season: 2010-11)
Director: Frank Darabont (“The Green Mile,” “The Shawshank Redemption,” “The Mist,” other decent Stephen King adaptations), Et. Al.
Writers: Darabont, Robert Kirkman & Tony Moore (also the creators of the comics of the same name)
Six Degrees Of Cast & Crew:
-Series co-stars include Michael Rooker, best known for horror classic “Henry: Portrait of a Serial Killer,” and Norman Reedus, best known as Murphy MacManus from “The Boondock Saints.” Reedus made his film debut in Guillermo Del Toro’s English language debut, “Mimic,” which was the best killer mutant bug movie released in 1997.
-Episode directors with a horror past include Frank Darabont (“The Mist,” which is actually really good and wonderfully bleak), Ernest Dickerson (“Futuresport” AKA the best movie with Dean Cain and Wesley Snipes ever, “Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight”), Guy Ferland (“The Babysitter”), and Michelle MacLaren (The X-Files, “Population 436″).
-Producer Gale Ann Hurd is perhaps best known as the ex-Mrs. John Carpenter who isn’t Adrienne Barbeau.
I’m seriously pumped about this one. Yes, it’s basic cable, but for years basic cable has been leading the way on good TV thanks to AMC and FX. I’m sure the gore will have to be toned down slightly, but I think they’ll get away with a lot more than I’d have expected just based on the excellent zombie makeup I’ve been seeing from the show in promotional materials. (Greg Nicotero of KNB FX, who do the zombies for Romero, is handling the corpses in The Walking Dead.) Basic cable has kind of been building up to this level for awhile, and as a longtime reader of The Walking Dead in graphic novel form, I’m very interested to see just how far the series takes some of the brutality and nihilism of the comic.
From the looks of this trailer, and the CV of some of the people involved, I’m looking forward to this one. The first series is only 6 episodes, but I think they can pack a lot into those six episodes and turn a little cable show into a genre classic of the highest order. Think about it–a long-running series where characters can be shuffled in and out via zombie killing, with the possibility for dozens of character arcs? This thing could be like a zombified Lost, except it could make sense and not run two seasons too long! I just hope the fact that most genre fans are a little zombied out right now won’t harm the TV show, because I really want it to become a huge hit and live up to the chilling trailer (and I like to encourage companies like AMC to take more risks when it comes to funding their own productions).
The Walking Dead will premiere as a 90-minute movie event on Halloween Night, October 31, at 10 PM on AMC. It will be carried internationally via Fox International Channels.