Zombies Ate My Neighbours Onscreen
Good neighbours become good... undead
You'd be forgiven for feeling like you're drowning in a sea of potential action zom-coms at the moment, but anyone who owned a SNES in the 1990s may prick up their ears at the news that a film adaptation of Zombies Ate My Neighbours is in the early stages of development.
The game, which came out in 1993 and was variously re-titled and censored depending on what country you lived in, was a top-down run-and-gun in which players controlled high-schoolers Zeke and Julie, scouring fifty-odd levels for missing suburbanites while fending off hordes of the undead.
It was released by Konami but developed by LucasArts, sharing some Monkey Island DNA in the form of some genuinely funny cartoony humour. Weapons ranged from flamethrowers to crockery, and if you didn't have the right key for a particular door, you could just blow it open with a bazooka. Oh, and you had to fight a giant baby.
According to First Showing, the pitch is a kind of Superbad-meets-Zombieland-meets-Home-Alone, with the projected film "primarily its own coming of age high school story". Given that Konami have yet to cough up the rights then, we do wonder why licensing that title is strictly necessary: the twenty-year-old videogame only really has name recognition for one generation (although it was recently made available in all its 16-bit glory as a download for the Wii). NoMeansNo would probably option their Last Scream of the Missing Neighbours LP for a smaller sum.
Whatever, the film is being set up as an indie by April Wade's Women On Top Productions. John Darko has written the script and is co-producing. Darko has recently been shooting second unit and stills for James Wan and Leigh Whannell's Insidious: an association that shouldn't stop him from landing some useful connections for financing. No director or cast are attached yet, but it seems reasonable to assume that Darko is eyeing the gig behind the camera himself.