Should’ve called it ‘Dead Heat’.
Zack Snyder’s upcoming zombie heist film Army of the Dead hits Netflix later this year, and the director has revealed some of the first images along with some new details about the anticipated project. Snyder shared the images in an interview with Entertainment Weekly, along with some comments from Army of the Dead co-stars Dave Bautista and Tig Notaro. The director said:
“It is a full-blown, balls-to-the-wall zombie heist movie, so it’s genre-on-genre in a great way. So you expect pure zombie mayhem, and you get that, 100 percent. But also you get these really amazing characters on a fantastic journey. It’s going to surprise people that there’s a lot of warmth and real emotion with these great characters… With Dawn [of the Dead], we made a zombie movie but tried to do it all the way with all of those tropes of the genre. That was so fun, so I started to think of what were other genres that story didn’t have room for. It’s this tone where you have fun with the genre but you don’t make fun of the genre — it’s a fine line.”
Snyder also shared some more news about the upcoming four-part animated prequel series Army of the Dead: Lost Vegas, which will feature Bautista, Notaro, and much of the film’s principal cast:
“I’ve done a very deep dive with the why of the zombie plague and where it starts. Sufficed to say, that it does come from Area 51 — that’s in the film’s opening scene – and then the whole cast is in the animated series, along with Christian Slater as the bad guy. We really do a super deep dive on where this like zombie plague came from.”
Interestingly, Bautista initially turned down Army of the Dead. “Then I read the script and it was a lot deeper and had more layers than I thought. And also, to be quite frank, I wanted to work with Zack.” He adds that, in addition to those deep layers, the movie is also going to be a good popcorn flick. “We’re running around killing zombies on craps tables. It’s just a ton of fun.”
Meanwhile, Notaro joined the film late, replacing Chris D’Elia after the comedian was accused of sexual misconduct by several women. “We just felt like the right thing to do,” Snyder said. “It was the best thing to do not just for the property but for respecting humanity and people and decency. In the end, it was a pretty easy choice.”
“It’s a comedic role, and Zack said he wanted me to do exactly what I do — which is good because I always tell directors, ‘Before you say anything, just keep in mind that I have no range,’ ” Notaro said. Since filming had already been completed, Notaro had to film her role in front of a greenscreen so she could be digitally added to the movie. It’ll be interesting to see how well her performance gels with the rest of the cast knowing that she didn’t actually get to be in the same room with them. (And also because she is a vastly different presence than D’Elia.)
Army of the Dead is shaping up to be a fun action movie with a different spin on an established genre. For more on Snyder, check out this brutal alternate Wonder Woman concept art the director recently shared.
“How do we deal with living in this dystopian era? I don’t think any show addressed it as directly as ‘The Good Fight.'”
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