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Zombie World Record!?

Posted by GoreMaster Special Effects on July 3, 2009

Zombie Walk

Christy Karras – The Seattle Times

 July 3 –   If you’re in Fremont (Seattle) tonight, you may find yourself surrounded by hordes of groaning, lurching, pasty people covered with blood. Don’t be alarmed. In fact, feel free to join them.The Fremont Outdoor Film series hopes to break the world record for number of people in a “zombie walk,” in conjunction with its screening of “Shaun of the Dead.”

   Fremont Outdoor Movies organizer Ryan Reiter says the event is about fun — as is the night’s film, a macabre British comedy about Londoners fleeing when zombies invade.

The outdoor screenings in Fremont are always participatory events with singalongs, dress-ups and contests. This one will incorporate those, plus a “Thriller” dance planned long before Michael Jackson’s death last week.

   Reiter hopes the event will draw 5,000 people or so, which would easily break the zombie-walk record. Participants who don’t have any fake blood handy can arrive early to get made up.

   Why zombies? Reiter says they’re a creative way to get adrenaline flowing and escape from the everyday bad news that bombards us. “It really is kind of high-camp summer fun,” he said.

   Only after he decided on the march did he discover the scope of Seattle’s zombie scene. Organized groups of zombies — or at least people playing zombies — show up frequently here at everything from Halloween parties to Pride parades. Sometimes, they hit the streets just for kicks.

   Zombie walks are a national phenomenon fueled in part by the “flash mob” fad, and partly by the success of movies and books on the subject. Like any other subculture, it’s a way to meet others with similar interests — which in this case include a flair for drama and a passion for blood.

  GoreMaster Makeup Effects Manual Bellevue resident Tim Gillespie, who has gone to several marches including the West Seattle walk in 2008, is drawn to “the camaraderie, the fun, the whole zombie culture that’s built around the movies.” Despite their grisly hobby, he says, zombie marchers are also “just really nice people.”

   To ensure the event goes off smoothly and safely, organizers will have about 30 staffers on hand. “Just having people running around as zombies could really create a problem, if you let it,” Reiter said.

   Reiter doesn’t expect that everyone who shows up for the walk will stick around for the screening, which will hold about 1,000 people. But just in case, overflow space can seat an extra 1,000.

   Seattle zombie walkers will be on duty tonight to help get members of the public into undead mode. They’ll even judge a fashion show. The creators of the Seattle-based Night Zero online photo comic books — which depict Seattle in the aftermath of a zombie invasion — will host a zombie-survival workshop called “How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Apocalypse.”

   S.G. Browne, author of the zombie novel “Breathers,” also will be in town Friday to sign books at nearby Fremont Place Books. The creators of “ZMD: Zombies of Mass Destruction,” a locally made film that was a hot ticket at the recent Seattle International Film Festival, will also be on hand — as will Seattle Times zombie expert (and author of the comic book “Rotten”) Mark Rahner.

“It’s going to be a sort of expo of zombie lovin,’ ” Reiter said. 

Zombie News at GoreMaster.com

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