Last year, one of the best zombie films I’ve seen in years quietly came out at a few festivals. Shinichiro Ueda’s One Cut of the Dead was a sleeper hit, making a phenomenally original zombie film in a sea of ubiquitous movies about the living dead. It was one of Japan’s biggest hit last year and the hype is finally making its way across the Pacific. It’s only been out on Blu-ray and DVD since the end of January, but it is already set to get an English language remake. Why? Great question.
Producer Patrick Cunningham, who was behind Martha Marcy May Marlene and Starlet, bought the rights to the film and wants to make sure the U.S. gets to see it. Cunningham said in an interview with Variety, “The goal is for as many people as possible to see it.”
The original One Cut of the Dead is a low-budget zombie film that will defy any expectations of what a zombie film can be. Editor Jonathan Dehaan reviewed it during last year’s Fantastic Fest and said, “One Cut Of The Dead might be the best movie I have seen all year (and I’m really sick of zombie movies). It’s a love letter to B-Movies, movie-making in general, and the frustration at needless compromises when creating something of your own.”
Here is the official synopsis:
One Cut Of The Dead opens in a run-down, abandoned warehouse where a film crew are making a zombie film. Yet, this is no ordinary warehouse. It’s been said that it’s the site of where military experiments took place. Out of nowhere, real zombies arrive and terrorize the crew! This may sound like a the plot of a clichéd zombie film, but One Cut of the Dead is something completely different! Starting off with a non-stop one-take 37 minute shot, the film then completely switches direction and turns the zombie genre completely upside down into a charming, audience-friendly comedy!
One Cut of the Dead premiered at the Yubari Festival in northern Japan last year and was made on a budget of only $27,000. But by the end of December, the film made $26.3 million. It was such a hit in Japan but was barely shown in the U.S., so hopefully this news will bring a surge of new viewers to such an original film.
No writer or director is connected to the One Cut of the Dead English remake yet. Have you seen One Cut of the Dead? What do you think of another English remake? Let us know your thoughts on Twitter, Instagram, Reddit, and in the Horror Fiends of Nightmare on Film Street Facebook group!