Gregory Lamberson to direct zombie revenge film Johnny Gruesome

Last Updated on August 5, 2021

Johnny Gruesome Gregory Lamberson

Author/filmmaker Gregory Lamberson, probably best known for his 1988 cult favorite horror/comedy SLIME CITY, is preparing to go into production on a film that has been a passion project of his for decades, JOHNNY GRUESOME.

Lamberson first wrote the screenplay for JOHNNY GRUESOME in 1984, and while he has been dreaming of bringing the zombie revenge tale to the screen ever since, he didn't just let the story sit on the shelf all this time. In 2007, he fleshed the script out into a novel that was published by Bad Moon Books (hardcover) and Medallion Press (paperback). Medallion described the story in this way: 

Johnny Grissom—nicknamed "Johnny Gruesome" by his high school classmates—is a heavy metal hellion who loves to party, watch horror movies, and get into fights. One winter night, Johnny's car, The Death Mobile, is discovered submerged beneath the icy surface of Willow Creek, with Johnny's waterlogged corpse inside. The townspeople believe that his death was accidental. But soon the murders begin—horrible acts of violent vengeance that hint at a deepening mystery and terror yet to come. A headless body is discovered at the high school, a priest is forced to confront his own misdeeds, and a mortician encounters the impossible. The sound of a car engine and maniacal laughter fill the night, and one by one, Johnny's enemies meet a grisly demise. The students at Red Hill High School begin to fear for their lives—especially Johnny's closest friends, who all harbor a dark secret.

After thirty-two years of having a JOHNNY GRUESOME movie in his head, Lamberson has secured funding to make that movie. Filming is expected to begin this month, and several cast members have already signed on.

Actor/musician Anthony De La Torre is set to play Johnny Grissom, with Michael DeLorenzo as his father Charlie. Their co-stars will include Byron Brown II, April Panaggio, Madison Amey, Chris Modrzynski, Kim Piazza, and Richard Lounello

The special makeup effects will be handled by Craig Lindberg and Mark Kosobucki.

It's always great to see a filmmaker get to realize their passion project, so I'm very glad to hear that JOHNNY GRUESOME is finally going to be happening. I wish the cast and crew the best of luck as they bring this story to life, and I hope the finished film will be something that the 1984 Lamberson would have been blown away by.

Johnny Gruesome Anthony De La Torre

De La Torre

Source: Rue Morgue

About the Author

Cody is a news editor and film critic, focused on the horror arm of, and writes scripts for videos that are released through the JoBlo Originals and JoBlo Horror Originals YouTube channels. In his spare time, he's a globe-trotting digital nomad, runs a personal blog called Life Between Frames, and writes novels and screenplays.