George Romero: King of the Zombies

By: Bambi Turner
Image: Wiki Commons

About This Quiz

Decades before "The Walking Dead" brought zombies into living rooms across the country, George Romero was bringing the undead to the big screen to terrify moviegoers. He may have pioneered the concept of zombie horror starting with "Night of the Living Dead," but Romero is much more than a one-hit wonder. Take our quiz to see how much you know about this movie master.

Some of Romero's earliest work was on this kid-friendly TV show.

Can you imagine horror movie master George Romero teamed up with Mister Rogers? Some of Romero's earliest shots were on episodes of "Mister Rogers' Neighborhood," including an episode where Mister Rogers has to go to the hospital for a tonsillectomy.

When did Romero's iconic "Night of the Living Dead" come out?

"Night of the Living Dead" was released just in time for Halloween in October 1968. It was a success at the box office, making more than $30 million on a budget of just $114,000.

How many films in the "Dead" series did Romero direct?

As of 2016, George Romero has directed six films in his "Night of the Living Dead" series. The first came out in 1968, and the sixth, "Survival of the Dead," came out 40 years later in 2009.

In the original "Night of the Living Dead," who is the only character to survive the night in the farmhouse?

When a group of strangers ends up trapped in a rural farmhouse, only Ben -- played by Duane Jones -- survives the night. He emerges in the morning, only to be shot in the head by a group of locals who think he is one of the zombies.

Where were most of Romero's movies filmed?

Romero chose his hometown of Pittsburgh to shoot many of his films. His decision was partly a matter of hometown pride and partly a matter of saving money by shooting outside of major hubs like Los Angeles or New York.

In "Night of the Living Dead," a probe from this planet transformed the dead into zombies.

One year before the moon landing, the public was fascinated with space exploration. Romero decided that in his first film, a probe returning from Venus carried enough radiation to reanimate the dead and cause a zombie nightmare.

What role did Romero play onscreen in "Night of the Living Dead?"

Romero made cameo appearances in many of his films, including "Night of the Living Dead," where he played a reporter during the scenes in Washington DC.

"Night of the Living Dead" is in the public domain.

The film's distributor wanted to release it as "Night of the Flesh Eaters." When they finally agreed to use "Night of the Living Dead," they forgot to add the right copyright language, which means that the film has been in the public domain for decades.

Which of these did producers use to make blood in "Night of the Living Dead?"

Since the film was shot in black and white, producers were able to use red ink or chocolate syrup to create the bloody scenes in "Night of the Living Dead." When you see Karen Cooper feasting on other characters, she is eating ground beef leftover from lunch.

When did Romero release "Dawn of the Dead," his second film in the series?

It took Romero a decade to follow up "Night of the Living Dead" with its first sequel," Dawn of the Dead," in 1978.

Where is "Dawn of the Dead" set?

In "Dawn of the Dead," survivors take refuge in a shopping mall, where they are forced to not only defend themselves against the undead, but also against a horde of angry bikers. The survivors eventually make it out of the mall via a helicopter.

Where does the 1985 film "Day of the Dead" take place?

In "Day of the Dead," a group of scientists work to find a cure for the zombie crisis while working in an underground bunker in Florida.

What is the name of the zombie-proof vehicle in "Land of the Dead?"

In the 2005 sequel "Land of the Dead," survivors travel through the flesh-eating hoards in a souped-up vehicle known as Dead Reckoning. Those who can afford it live at the high-end Fiddler's Green apartments, while everyone else is left to fend for themselves against the zombies.

What year did Romero release his fifth film in the series, "Diary of the Dead?"

"Diary of the Dead," which is not quite a sequel but is set in the same universe as his other films, features a group of college students who are making a horror film in the woods when the zombies attack.

Where is the 2009 film "Survival of the Dead" set?

Romero's sixth "Dead" film takes place on Plum Island, off the coast of Delaware, where a group of ex-Army men come across a pair of feuding families as zombies close in.

What genre did Romero choose for his second film "There's Always Vanilla?"

Romero followed up his 1968 horror classic "Night of the Living Dead" with a romantic comedy. "There's Always Vanilla" focused on an ex-Army soldier named Chris, who resisted settling down to take over the operation of the family business -- a baby food factory.

What was the original title of the 1973 Romero flick "Season of the Witch?"

Distributors marketed Romero's 1973 film as very softcore porn under the title "Hungry Wives!" After the success of Romero's other work, the film was renamed "Season of the Witch" to appeal to horror fans.

What was the name of the virus in the 1973 film "The Crazies?"

In Romero's film "The Crazies," a virus that goes by the code name Trixie takes the town of Evans City, Pennsylvania, by storm, transforming the citizens into ghouls and zombies.

What was so strange about the title character in the 1978 film "Martin?"

Romero's 1978 film "Martin" focused on a young vampire named Martin, who was in the care of his great-uncle Tateh Cuda. After Martin gets out of control, Cuda is forced to stake the boy through the heart to protect the public.

What did the characters in "Knightriders" use while jousting?

In Romero's 1981 film "Knightriders," the characters were members of a traveling renaissance fair who jousted on motorcycles instead of horses.

What does gang leader Billy have nightmares about in "Knightriders?"

In "Knightriders," gang leader Billy -- played by Ed Harris -- dreams of a black bird. This turns out to be a premonition of an Indian rider who will cause Billy a serious injury. In the end, Billy is killed by a truck and the other riders mourn his death.

Who wrote the screenplay for Romero's 1982 classic "Creepshow?"

In his screenwriting debut, Stephen King wrote the script for the Romero-directed "Creepshow." The film premiered in 1982 and featured five short, scary stories based on classic horror themes.

Who is the young comic book lover in "Creepshow?"

Stephen King's son Joe plays Billy in "Creepshow." The young boy is featured in the prologue and epilogue to the film, where he gets in trouble for reading too many comic books.

What is the name of the evil monkey in "Monkey Shines?"

In Romero's 1988 film "Monkey Shines," a quadriplegic man named Allan gets help from a monkey named Ella -- who likes him just a little too much.

Romero's "Two Evil Eyes" is based on stories by this writer.

The 1990 Romero film "Two Evil Eyes" features two spooky stories based on "The Facts in the Case of M. Valdemar" and "The Black Cat" by horror master Edgar Allen Poe.

What 2000 Romero film featured a faceless monster named Henry?

Romero's 2000 flick "Bruiser" focused on a vengeful killer named Henry, whose face is a terrifying blank mask. Unlike many other Romero films, "Bruiser" was filmed in Toronto rather than Pennsylvania.

Which Stephen King novel did Romero turn into a 1993 film?

Romero transformed King's novel "The Dark Half" into a 1993 film of the same name. In the movie, a writer named Thad Beaumont is terrorized by his own pen name -- George Stark.

What role did Romero play in "The Silence of the Lambs?"

Like unexpected cameos? George Romero played a prison guard in "The Silence of the Lambs." You can see him in that scene where Clarice gets a little too close to Lecter's cell in the Tennessee courthouse and has to be pulled away for her own safety.

What was the name of Romero's series for DC Comics?

Romero penned a series of comics for DC in 2004 and 2005 under the name "Toe Tags." They were about -- what else? -- zombies.

What twist did Romero give to his zombie world in his Marvel Comics series "Empire of the Dead?"

If you're going to have the undead unleashing havoc, why not add vampires? In his Marvel Comics series "Empire of the Dead," Romero expanded the spooky underworld by adding vampires to the mix. AMC picked up the TV rights to the series in 2015.

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