Zombie premiere will be a 'thriller'

Marking the upcoming world premiere of I Survived a Zombie Holocaust in Dunedin yesterday are ...
Marking the upcoming world premiere of I Survived a Zombie Holocaust in Dunedin yesterday are (from left) Levi Spurr, Charlotte Morgan, Zoe Hobson and Aaron Kearney. Photo by Linda Robertson.

The dawn of the dead is coming to Dunedin.

A zombie feature film produced in Otago during the past three years will have its world premiere in Dunedin next month.

I Survived a Zombie Holocaust will premiere on August 16 in the Dunedin Town Hall, during the new Dunedin City Council-sponsored Dundead Festival, celebrating pop culture and science.

''I'm hugely excited the film is completed and it's fantastic that we're having the world premiere in Dunedin,'' producer Zoe Hobson said yesterday.

''It's the first New Zealand Film Commission-funded feature to be made in Dunedin with a local cast and crew in 15 years.''

More than 500 Otago people took part in the film as extras, in location shoots at Seacliff, South Dunedin and Oamaru.

''We couldn't have made it anywhere else but Dunedin. The number of locations here and the number of people wanting to help was just incredible,'' Ms Hobson said.

''It seems only fitting it should have its premiere where it was conceived and shot.''

The $250,000 budget film went into production in 2011 and was completed in June. It has already gained international interest and will screen at Fright Fest in London, a week after the Dunedin premiere.

''We've had a fantastic response to the film already and are really excited about where it will go from here,'' Ms Hobson said.

The $250,000 budget film, written by Dunedin director Guy Pigden and produced by Dunedin company 38 Films, is based around a B-grade zombie film set which is attacked by real zombies.

A flash mob of more than 500 zombies will perform the Michael Jackson hit Thriller before the town hall premiere, accompanied by a Taiko drumming group, using bones as drumsticks.

''We plan to make it a night that Dunedin will remember, with some serious spectacle and plenty of surprises,'' Dundead director Dallas Synnott-Chapman said yesterday.

- nigel.benson@odt.co.nz

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