Special Zombie Make-Up Effects Secrets REVEALED!
 
(Or “How we turned a couple of married, middle-aged
men into something even more repulsive!”)
 The Colonel Becomes A Zombie!    Jeremiah's Zombie Zits
 
To remain true to the “glory days” of the Italian
zombie film (1979-1994), we immediately decided that
animated “digital zombies” would not be utilized.  As
much as we liked Roger Rabbit, cartoon monsters just
aren’t scary in any film we’ve seen.  Likewise, the
recent “shot-on-video” zombie make-up trend of a
little blue watercolor paint on the face and hands was
rejected as too cartoony as well.  We read somewhere
that the make-up crew for Andrea Bianchi’s 1981 zombie
blockbuster “Burial Ground” used actual human flesh in
their zombie concoctions, but the article failed to
mention exactly where they got this flesh; a somewhat
convenient oversight.  
 
Jeremiah Wants To Eat You  Colonel and Jeremiah Zombified  
So having eliminated cartoons, watercolors and human
flesh, we next hit upon the idea making our zombies
look similar to those in Umberto Lenzi’s 1980
hyperactive masterpiece “City of the Walking Dead”. 
Lacking information on their make-up effects
processes, we decided that smearing wet feces on the
faces of the actors portraying zombies was the only
way we could approximate the look of Lenzi’s zombies
and, as you might imagine, we had a jolly good time
doing this but it wasn’t very popular with the cast so
we ultimately rejected the approach.  
 
The Colonel is Shitfaced  Effects Techs Smearing Feces on Colonel
Eventually, and some would say miraculously, we
decided to actually read the script to see if it
mentioned what the zombies should look like.  Well, we
didn’t actually “read” the script per se, that
would’ve taken way too long (hell the actors didn’t
even read the script most of the time) but we did
glean it and wherever we saw the word “zombie” we read
the adjacent words (usually twice) and then it was
like “Presto”!  It’s amazing how sometimes when
you like read something with words on it, the words
will like translate into like visions in your head,
and you can like call it ESP or whatever, but it’s
really like, well, it’s not like, you know, just
reading your emails, with “LOL” and stuff like that
which you translate in your mind into “Laughing Out
Loud”, but it’s like a real scene appearing in your
mind from just written words!  But never mind; it’s
probably something you’ll never experience.
 
Zombie Soldier
Anyway, without giving away too much of the plot, most
of the zombies in this film are supposed to be
soldiers who participated in a massive human
experiment which turned them into the walking dead. 
Honing in on the whole “human experiment” aspect, we
designed our zombies using medical wastes often found
washed up on the beaches of Lake Michigan.  We also
secretly culled medical wastes from hospital
dumpsters, covertly pulled “sharps” out of the local
veterinarian’s garbage can, etc.  The used bandages,
rotted teeth, clumps of shaved pubic hair, and the
occasional glass eye all combined to make some of the
most “hazardous” zombies in the history of motion
picture entertainment; a fact we are quite proud of.  
 
So, there you have it.  In our next installment, we’ll
tell you how we simulated the human blood and entrails
in the film, and most importantly, the dog brain!
 
A Bucket of Guts

 

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