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Workprint edit of Night of the Living Dead included on Criterion release

11.16.2017by: Cody Hamman

Night of the Living Dead George A. Romero Judith O'Dea

This is some of the most exciting special feature news I've heard in a long time, ranking high up in the running for coolest special feature news ever: George A. Romero's classic NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD is getting a 2-disc Blu-ray (and 3-disc DVD) release courtesy of Criterion, and the company has revealed that one of the extras will be workprint edit of the film under an earlier title, "NIGHT OF ANUBIS".

NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD was given that title late in the process, with previous options being the ANUBIS title and NIGHT OF THE FLESH EATERS. These title changes ended up causing some trouble for the filmmakers, as the initial prints had the FLESH EATERS title on them and when the distributor replaced that title card with the LIVING DEAD one they forgot to include a copyright symbol. Thus, NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD became public domain.

The full list of announced features on the upcoming release: 

- New 4K digital restoration, supervised by director George A. Romero, coscreenwriter John A. Russo, sound engineer Gary R. Streiner, and producer Russell W. Streiner

- New restoration of the monaural soundtrack, supervised by Romero and Gary R. Streiner, and presented uncompressed on the Blu-ray

- Night of Anubis, a never-before-presented work-print edit of the film

- New program featuring filmmakers Frank Darabont, Guillermo del Toro, and Robert Rodriguez

- Never-before-seen 16 mm dailies reel

- New piece featuring Russo about the commercial and industrial-film production company where key Night of the Living Dead filmmakers got their start

- Two audio commentaries from 1994, featuring Romero, Russo, producer Karl Hardman, actor Judith O’Dea, and more

- Archival interviews with Romero and actors Duane Jones and Judith Ridley

- New programs about the editing, the score, and directing ghouls

- New interviews with Gary R. Streiner and Russel W. Streiner

- Trailer, radio spots, and TV spots
More!

- PLUS: An essay by critic Stuart Klawans

It's incredible that early materials like dailies and workprint cuts are still available to be unveiled to fans fifty years after the film's release, and it's going to be fascinating to see them.

Criterion will be releasing their special edition of NIGHT OF THE LIVING DEAD on February 13, 2018. If you'd like to pre-order a copy of the Blu-ray, you can do so on Amazon.

Extra Tidbit: Will you be buying the Criterion release?
Source: Criterion

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