Romeo and Juliet… and Zombies

10 Jun

Romeo and Juliet

Proving that Kim Paffenroth was incorrect in his assumption that adding zombies doesn’t instantly make everything 10x better the Edinburgh Festival presents Romeo and Juliet vs The Living Dead

The Edinburgh Film Festival will host the world premiere of the feature film Romeo & Juliet vs. The Living Dead on June 26th, 2009 (23:00 at Filmhouse 1); the independently made romantic comedy precedes a number of horror/classic literature mash-ups being developed this year

Among the twenty-three world premieres to be unveiled at the 63rd Annual Edinburgh Film Festival, there is one title that can not help but to catch the eye: Romeo & Juliet vs. The Living Dead. The low-budget independent film aims to be the word-of-mouth hit at Edinburgh that Colin, the famed $70 zombie film, was at this year’s Cannes Film Festival.

Romeo & Juliet vs. The Living Dead appears to be the first in a wave of horror/classic literature mash-ups. Recently, development has begun on films such as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies and, another Austen parody, Pride and Predator. The latter is produced by Elton John’s Rocket Pictures.

The Shakespeare parody is the debut film by director Ryan Denmark, who has worked for the last six years as Spike Lee’s associate editor on films such as Inside Man and Miracle at St. Anna. Produced in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Denmark’s take on this tale of star-crossed lovers both embraces and reinvents Shakespeare’s classic text.

“The idea for the film is Juliet, of noble Capulet birth, falls in love with Romeo, a zombie and hilarity ensues. That only goes so far,” says Denmark. “We needed more or it was going to be a one gag show. For me R&J is a parable about how hatred consumes everything around it. However, it has also spawned a worship of hysterical juvenile love. For that reason, the play has a lot in common with 80’s teen romance films. So when we approached the script we were influenced by films like Valley Girl and Pretty in Pink. We expanded the character of Mercutio to create a love triangle and away we went. Everything flowed from there, including our answer to the problematic question everyone asks, if Romeo is already dead, how does he kill himself? The film is a romantic comedy, but you know, with zombies.”

With this in mind, Denmark has aimed the film for a wide audience, “We want to be the perfect date movie. That’s not to say a chick-flick. This is the film a zombie lover can drag their significant other to and everyone will walk away happy.”

Romeo & Juliet vs. The Living Dead will premiere at the Edinburgh Film Festival on June 26th, 2009. It plays at 23:00 at Filmhouse 1. Director/writer Ryan Denmark will be in attendance along with writer Jason Witter, who also portrays the undead Romeo.

You can find more on the film over on Third Star Film’s official site.


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Comments (4)


  1. […] I am over the whole “add zombies to classic lit” mashup subgenre, so pardon my yawn at Romeo and Juliet vs. The Living Dead. Feel free to get excited if you aren’t similarly jaded, I won’t hold it against you. […]

  2. Reminds me of the upcoming “Pride and Predator”, set to be produced by Elton John, of all people. Can you guess the plot?

  3. Gnomeo montangue says:

    Im a gnome not a zombie

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