As we said in Monday’s post, the zombie as we know it just wouldn’t eXXXist without the late, great George A. Romero. The influence of his Dead films can be felt in just about every form of zombie media, notably the ever-popular Resident Evil video game franchise.
We here at Kinky Ho-rror just adore the unholy heck out of out of the Resident Evil series… but who doesn’t? The franchise has sold over 77 million units sold worldwide, produced countless pieces of merchandise, inspired theme park attraction, and inspired a series of Matrix remakes.
While the series eventually went for an action/adventure style, the first few games owe much to Master Romero. From the slow-moving flesh eaters to the claustrophobic setting of the first game, there’s no doubt that these games would not eXXXist without Romero’s mad genius.
In 1998, the series acknowledged the Romero influence by hiring the man himself to direct a live-action TV commercial for Resident Evil 2 (known as Biohazard 2 in Japan). The 30-second spot features a group of gruesome zombies raising hell at a jail and features game-accurate costumes. You can watch that bit o’ awesome below…
Though it only aired in Japan, the commercial inspired Sony to hire Romero to adapt the first game into a full-length feature. Unfortunately, the film eventually died, eventually morphing into Paul W.S. Anderson’s 2002 adaptation. However, it’s been said that the success of that film and the resurgence of zombies in pop culture allowed Romero to make 2004’s Land of the Dead.
As an added bit o’ Romero goodness, here’s The King of the Zombies talking about the commercial: