The Return of the Night of the Living Dead Puppet Show

Oct. 20, 2016
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Night of the Living Dead Puppets

It's time again to respect a very influential error on the part of the Walter Reade organization. It was a simple clerical error. They had originally had a copyright notice on the title card of their 1968 film Night of the Flesh Eaters. Somewhere along the line the decision was made to change the title to the far more poetic Night of the Living Dead. Someone forgot to put the copyright notice on the new title card and the film. As a result, the film had been sold on home video by nearly everyone interested in distributing horror films. As of 2016, there were some 208 different versions of the thing available on DVD. The public domain downloads of the film are well over 2 million according to the Internet Archive. It was one of the first films ever to be distributed on the Internet. And all because someone at Walter Reade forgot to include a copyright at the bottom of the new title card. Zombies had been around prior to the movie, but the vision of them as decaying, reanimated flesh-eating undead was a Romero invention. Close your eyes and picture a zombie. See that zombie? It didn’t exist in poipular culture prior to 1968. It didn’t exist before Romero’s Night of the Living Dead.

The public domain status of Romero’s classic reimagining of the undead has given birth to a whole subculture and a rather lucrative sub-genre of horror. It’s also given local audiences an opportunity to see zombie puppets. I think that’s pretty cool. Once again this year Angry Young Men Ltd. presents its scene-for-scene recreation of Romero’s classic horror film...with puppets. This year’s staging takes place one night only: Oct. 27 at the Oriental Theater on 2230 N. Farwell. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. The show start at 7:30 p.m. For a refresher in the original movie, you can visit YouTube. For more information abotu Angry Young Men, visit them online. 

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