RIP Horror Legend George A. Romero: 'Living Dead' Director Dies At 77

Kelvin Reese
July 19, 2017

United States filmmaker George A Romero, whose 1968 cult classic "Night of the Living Dead" spawned the zombie movie genre, died on Sunday aged 77, according to his manager in a report by AFP.

His manager Chris Roe said that he died in his sleep with his family around him, adding that he was listening to the score of The Quiet Man, which was one of his favourite films.

Romero died Sunday after a "brief but aggressive" battle with lung cancer.

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With a budget of just $114,000, George A. Romero defined his career with the release of "Night of the Living Dead" in 1968, grossing $30 million in box office sales and becoming a cult figure in not just horror filmmaking but the movie industry in general. Ironically, the creatures in the film are never once called zombies; in the script, Romero merely referred to them as "ghouls".

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Romero was a horror icon, whose name, when stamped on posters for more recent zombie flicks including 2007's "Diary of the Dead", still rang loudly among fans of the genre and studios looking for box office returns.

"Night of the Living Dead" was added by the Library of Congress in 1999 to its National Film Registry for works considered "culturally, historically, or aesthetically significant".

Romero also wrote comic books and was involved with producing video games. He graduated from Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, then began shooting shorts and commercials, including a segment of "Mr. Rogers Neighborhood".

Romero is survived by his wife and three children.

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