John Carpenter Says ‘The Walking Dead’ is a Rip-Off

By July 3, 2016

Few filmmakers have quite a synonymous name with the horror genre, as John Carpenter does. The man behind the original Halloween, The Thing, and Christine (among many other, incredible non-horror movies as well) has cemented a footprint upon the genre that we can still see the ripples of in the horror movies being made today. After all, who’s films was It Follows most compared to last year?

The filmmaker has some divisive opinions on the horror movie genre though at the same time, including believing the original Friday the 13th to be a cynical attempt to replicate what he had done with Halloween, which some fans may agree with and others might not.

While recently appearing on the newest episode of WTF with Marc Maron as well, Carpenter shared some interesting thoughts on The Walking Dead (H/T Inquisitr), the horror TV show that has been sweeping the world for six seasons now.

Carpenter seems to see the series though, as nothing more than a rehash of George Romero’s Night of the Living Dead:

“[The Walking Dead] was a movie that George Romero made back in 1968. And they have milked that, and they are still milking it.”

Now, it’s a fair point, though the same could be said for basically every other zombie movie in history that followed Night of the Living Dead in 1968. Similar to the slasher sub-genre that was sort of spawned out of Halloween, Romero’s film is the main reason that we have all of the other beloved zombie movies and properties that we do. So I could see him calling it a rehash, especially knowing how he feels about Friday the 13th, though this criticism of The Walking Dead may be a bit of a stretch from where I’m sitting.

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Alex Welch

Alex Welch

Alex dreams of meeting a girl with a yellow umbrella, and spends too much time* staring at a movie screen. His vocabulary consists mostly of movie quotes and 80s song lyrics. *Debatable
  • David Johnson

    George Romero scared the Hell out of Me with NOTLD. The whole story was centered right around where I grew up so seeing it at 12 had an impact! TWD needs to get there writing level back to the early seasons (1 thru 3) because it hasn’t just dropped in quality but they are to afraid to offend the shows fans!!!

  • Steve Ward

    Hmmm yes and no. I mean Romero mixed and took cues from ‘I Am Legend’. People love the sub-genre though. I do agree however they have milked it royally.

  • Joseph Johnson

    Did you seriously just put John Carpenter on the same level as Spielberg, George Miller and Scorsese?

    John Carpenter made 3 good movies in the 80’s, and hasn’t done shit since… So you might want to pump the brakes on that one! I still can’t believe I found this free survival guide: At least I know I’ll be safe when the world ends.

  • Rene

    Then, ‘Christine’ was a rip-off from ‘The Car’.

  • Raziel

    Well, there are zombies and the similarities end there. I’ll take the walking dead over Night of the walking dead any day.

    • Surroundedbyidiots

      Yes, yesss, although I do love NOtLD…..TWD is better.

  • luggenbug

    Carpenter is just a bitter old guy now. He hasn’t made a good movie in ages. Look how terrible these were: Ghosts of Mars, his two Masters of Horror episodes, and The Ward. I once had the biggest respect for the man, but oh boy, has he turned into a bitter, lazy, grumpy grampa! The Walking Dead is very good, despite the fact that now and then it can be called a “soap opera with zombies.” Mr. Carpenter, why don’t you quit those stupid video games and go out and look for a directing job? Let’s see if you can make anything as good as you did in the 70s-80s-90s. I bet you can’t!