They’re coming to get you, Barbara… this time in two-dimensions!
Due to a copyright screw-up way back in 1968, Night of the Living Dead is part of the public domain. Without that flub, zombie movies and even horror movies as a genre might look very different today. As is, we get new and (sometimes) wonderful takes on George A. Romero’s opus pretty regularly. This latest one promises to be unique, at least, because it’s animated.
The exact style of animation has yet to be revealed, but there’s plenty of ways to get creative with the medium. Will they go the Animatrix or Love, Death, & Robots style and switch up the animation for different story beats? Will they do some wild black and white magic like the upcoming Junji Ito adaptation Uzumaki? Will the entire thing look like the wildest episode of Scooby Doo ever? We’ll have to wait and see, unfortunately.
The Complete Cartoon Cast
What we do know about Night of the Animated Dead is that it has an absolutely stellar cast, per The Hollywood Reporter.. Dulé Hill (Psych) will voice Ben, portrayed in the original film by Duane Jones and by Tony Todd, Candyman himself, in the 1990 remake. Ben’s role was somewhat shocking to audiences in 1968, as many folks weren’t used to seeing a Black man as the hero. The implications of a Black hero gunned down by the militia that should be there to save him are just as relevant today as they were in the ’60s, perhaps even more so.
Josh Duhamel (Batman: The Long Halloween) stars as the voice of Harry Cooper, portrayed in the original film by producer Karl Hardman. Nancy Travis (Last Man Standing) will voice his wife, Helen.
Horror royalty Katharine Isabelle (Ginger Snaps, Hannibal) will portray Barbara, who famously gets chased by the undead in the film’s opening sequence. Her brother Johnny, who chases her through the cemetery, will be voiced by Westworld‘s Jimmi Simpson. James Roday Rodriguez (the other half of Psych!) will voice Tom, one of the other survivors trying to survive the walking dead. Tom’s girlfriend Judy will be voiced by Katee Sackhoff (The Mandalorian), which means I’ll be half-expecting her character to kick extra undead ass. Canadian comic perfection Will Sasso (The Three Stooges) rounds out the cast as Sheriff McClelland.
Night of the Animated Dead is directed by Jason Axinn, who helmed the 2019 animated horror feature To Your Last Death. Warner Bros. Home Entertainment plans to release Night of the Animated Dead this fall on Blu-ray, DVD, and digital.
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