George A. Romero Biography

George A. Romero photo

Born: February 04, 1940

GEORGE A. ROMERO

Date of Birth: February 4, 1940

A native New Yorker, George A. Romero began making films when he was just 14 with an 8 mm camera. After graduating from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania's renowned Carnegie Mellon University, he began working in the industrial film business and saved up enough money to make his first feature length film in 1968, the black-and-white zombie movie Night of the Living Dead. Although it barely broke even initially, the movie became a success when Reader's Digest published an article criticizing it for its excessive gore and cannibalism scenes. The profit enabled Romero to make several more low budget pictures, including the documentary O.J. Simpson: Juice on the Loose (1974) before breaking into the mainstream with Dawn of the Dead (1978).

Made on a budget of $1.5 million, it grossed $40 million worldwide. Romero continued on the same path with Day of the Dead (1985), the third of the Dead films. Unfortunately, the film was panned by critics and bombed at the box office, barely making a profit. Although Monkey Shines (1988) lost money, it won Romero acclaim, including Best Director and Best Screenplay at Spain's Catalonian International Film Festival and the Critics' Award and International Fantasy Film Award at Fantasporto. The Dark Half (1993) also failed at the box office but won Best Film at Fantafestival and received a Best Director nomination from the Academy of Science Fiction, Fantasy and Horror Films.

In 2002, Romero won a Lifetime Achievement Award from the New York City Horror Film Festival. As public interest in horror and zombie films climbed to an all-time high, he decided to write and direct several more in his Dead series, including Land of the Dead (2005), Diary of the Dead (2008) and Survival of the Dead (2010).

Romero, who still makes his home in Pittsburgh, is married to second wife, actress Christine Forrest, and has three children.

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