The modestly unreadable The Walking Dead gets all of the zombie comic book love these days, but back when I was really into comics – and I’m talking about my high school years here, back when the first Bush was president – Deadworld was the shit. At a time when the zombie genre felt moribund, when it seemed like Hollywood had moved past the cannibal dead, Deadworld offered a unique and gory vision.
I haven’t revisited those old comics in decades, so I don’t know how they hold up, but at the time I loved Deadworld’s King Zombie. Intelligent, obnoxious and nasty, he rode a Harley and laid waste to humans as part of his campaign to take over our world. Yeah, this is definitely the kind of stuff that appeals to 16 year olds.
But now there’s a whole new generation of 16 year olds who have seen a ton of zombie movies, and they might be ready for something new. That’s what producer Bill Mechanic hopes – he’s hired David Hayter to write and co-produce (with his Dark Hero shingle) the film.
“It’s very much about the design of the Deadworld and creating cool, frightening but not necessarily gory creatures,” Hayter said. “I am a huge fan of zombie mythology.”
Mechanic said, “I’ve never done anything close to this subject, but I loved the whole world because it’s so unique.”
Hayter’s ‘not necessarily gory’ statement and the fact that Mechanic envisions this as a multifilm franchise does sort of make me think they’re aiming at PG-13. I don’t think that’s in the spirit of the comic, but I’ll give the project the benefit of the doubt until I have enough information where I’m not just pulling critiques out of my ass.