World War Z – The Movie
The World War Z movie is an apocalyptic zombie flic based on Max Brooks 2007 novel, World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War. The premise of the film is Gerry Lane, played by Brad Pitt, a United Nations employee that travels the world (or what’s left of it) in search of information that can put an end to the “zombie outbreak” that has rendered nations and society unrecognizable compared to their former selves.
In 2007 an intense bidding war broke out between Brad Pitt’s company Plan B Entertainment and Leonardo DiCaprio’s production company Appian Way for rights to the film; however in the end Plan B Entertainment was successful in obtaining the movie rights.
The original screenplay, penned by J. Michael Straczynski, known for creating Babylon 5 and Rising Stars. However, in a July 2009 interview with Fangoria, Max Brooks leaked out the fact that Matthew Michael Carnahan would be re-writing the screenplay and confirmed Brad Pitt would be playing the main character. With a budget estimated at $125 – 200 million, Marc Forster signed on to take the reigns as director for World War Z movie, which is being distributed by Paramount Pictures.
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Setbacks and Delays
Originally scheduled to come out on December 21, 2012, the motion picture has suffered some setbacks which has delayed its release date. There were reports that in March of 2011, Paramount Pictures was looking to find a co-financier for the film. It was rumored that if they didn’t find one, the movie would be shelved. Deadline.com wrote that Paramount was in serious discussions with Skydance and up to two other co-financers to save the film. May 2012 brought news that Damon Lindelof, who reworked Prometheus, was not able to rework the third act due to time restraints. Drew Goddard was brought in instead to rewrite the third act, and reshoots in Budapest delayed the film another seven weeks. . Then in March of 2013 The Wrap leaked out that in the original script the “zombie outbreak” had its beginning in China. Wanting to sign a distribution deal in China, Paramount Pictures decided to change the scene to avoid any complications with Chinese officials. With all the setbacks and complications, the much anticipated film is finally scheduled to be released in theaters nationwide on June 21, 2013. (Also in both RealD 3D and IMAX 3D in selected movie theatres)
The assembled cast consists of:
- Brad Pitt – Brad plays Gerry Lane, a United Nations worked traveling the globe meeting survivors of the “zombie apocalypse” in hopes of finding the truth on how it came about and how to put a permanent end to the plague
- Mireille Enos – Pitt’s wife, Karin
- Lucy Aharish – A youthful Palestinian woman
- James Badge Dale – A US soldier, named Captain Speke, who tries to convince the US government the zombie threat is real
- David Morse – survivor dwelling in an empty jail
- Elyes Gabel – Plays a character named Fassbach
- Matthew Fox
- Julia Levy-Boeken
While filming started in Malta in July of 2011, they have also shot in Glasgow (doubling as Philadelphia), and Budapest. A hunt for a city that could double as Philadelphia took months, after Philly was ruled out due to a lack of tax credits for the filmmakers. Originally Royal Tunbridge Wells, in England was chosen, however in the end the filmmakers deiced on Glasgow, Scotland.
Surprise! Surprise! It wouldn’t be Hollywood without the possibility of a sequel. Both the director and Paramount Pictures expressed to the Los Angeles Times that “each view World War Z as a trilogy.” Go figure! Hopefully the World War Z movie will live up to the hype, and is worth making (and seeing) two more films. Max Brooks has been quoted as saying he had “zero control” in the movie version, but he has also expressed his approval of the screenplay which is a good sign. Guess we’ll all find out June 21, 2013…