George Romero Has Found Deleted Scenes From NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD
I have seen Night of the Living Dead (the original, real one) that the idea of a new version of that film fills me with giddy excitement. But it turns out that could be exactly what we're getting, as George Romero has announced that he has discovered nine extra minutes of that movie and is having them remastered right now. And get this - these nine minutes aren't just random junk, it's an extended deleted scene in the basement of the farm house, and it's the biggest zombie scene in the movie!
Just in case that wasn't enough to make you excited, Martin Scorsese is overseeing the restoration. When this movie was first released Romero could never have imagined getting Scorsese to work on it, mostly because Scorsese wasn't famous yet.
Night of the LIving Dead is a stone-cold classic, so I am both excited and trepidatious to see how this addition of footage impacts the whole thing. I'm not even sure I was aware of the existence of this footage in the first place, let alone that it was lost. Historically I am beyond curious. Artistically... I'm waiting to see it.
There is an interesting consideration here: Night of the Living Dead is in public domain because the distributor forgot to put a copyright notice on the print (seriously). Could a version with nine new minutes be copyrighted? One of the problems with NOTLD is that there are so many home video versions that it's hard to figure out which is of actual quality - with the nine minutes added and a new copyright, any special edition of NOTLD would clearly be the one to own at home. You would hope/assume that release would come with a nice version of the original cut as well, just for archival purposes. A copyright on the film would also allow Romero to make some money on the movie that has inspired a zombie craze that has gotten so many other people filthy rich.