Horse VS Zombies

Makeup artist Greg Nicotero talks about AMC's The Walking Dead and one scene in particular (minor spoiler ahead)

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By Keven - 6/28/2010
If the makeup world of film was Star Wars - Greg Nicotero would be comparable to Yoda. If not Yoda - then maybe Darth Vader considering his specialty on working on many horror film sets.



Nicotero's company KNB EFX is working behind the scenes for the upcoming zombie saga set to debut this October and he had a chance to talk about some of the visual effects that look to set these zombies apart from most of the herd.

Nicotero said they want to remain true to the source material in that these zombies will degrade over time, which is why they are casting more and more tall and thin extras - to show a sort of 'starved' look.


Here's an early photo of Nicotero standing beside 'Bub' from the classic Day of the Dead, Nicotero has been a huge part of the zombie world since the very beginning when Romero was defining the genre.

One of the most horrific scenes early on in the series and probably the pilot episode - is when Rick's horse (spoiler alert!!!!) gets attacked by a hoarde of the undead. Nicotero talks about that scene.



"It’s almost like a Piranha attack – it really was like a feeding frenzy. We had thirty extras leaning over this prosthetic horse that we created, and they started ripping its insides and its entrails out and going crazy. They were sticking their heads in it and their hands in it." said Nicotero.

Nicotero talked about how he had to get the show's director - Frank Darabont rolling as to not miss the 'moment' in which the undead extras were about to unleash bananas.

"I kind of whipped them into a little bit of a frenzy before we shot, and it was funny because at one point I walked over to Frank (Darabont) and I’m like, “Dude, these guys are so amped up you better shoot this quick before they tear the horse apart!”, said Nicotero.
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29 Comments
InstigatorGIRL - 6/28/2010, 1:45 PM
Cool stuff. I haven't read this series. I keep hearing good things about it but I'm not into the zombie craze.
Stumblin - 6/28/2010, 1:53 PM
Sweet! Man I cannot wait for this to come out.

Instigator looks like what needed to be done, is done.
THEBAMF - 6/28/2010, 1:56 PM
Zombies eating a horse? I'm there.
Jayisawesome - 6/28/2010, 1:56 PM
It does look cool but I just don't want an overflow of zombie movies and shows like we have have with vampries
loganoneil - 6/28/2010, 1:58 PM
Give credit where credit is due - the props to the original 'Day of the Dead' belong to Tom Savini (whom Greg worked for at the time). As for the 'Yoda' comment, that title belongs to the one-and-ONLY Mr. Dick Smith, without whom MANY of today's special effects make-up artists would be nowhere!
Jayisawesome - 6/28/2010, 2:01 PM
I don't look like Jaleel white but um I guess I can give u an autograph
Jayisawesome - 6/28/2010, 2:04 PM
You couldn't call me any Other black sitcom actor at least some one that still gets work come on
KingConn - 6/28/2010, 2:07 PM
Now we wait for PETA to protest.
MassExecutions - 6/28/2010, 2:12 PM
Maybe PETZ will counter protest. Zombies have a natural right to eat horses don't they? Or maybe just to eat people.
loganoneil - 6/28/2010, 2:12 PM
No, I'm a prosethic make-up artist. The Smith analogy is correct in that he is viewed by most in the industry as one of the 'Godfathers' of the art - starting in the 50's on NBC television to working on such iconic movies as 'Little Big Man', 'Godfather I & II' 'Altered States', 'Taxi Driver', 'The Deer Hunter, 'The Exorcist' and 'Amedeus' (for which he won an Academy Award) - to name a few. He is truly revered by other master of the trade such as Savini, Rick Baker ('Men in Black') and Greg Cannom ('White Chicks') - to name a few.

As for Savini, it was HE (not Nicotero) who "...has been a huge part of the zombie world since the very beginning when Romero was defining the genre." It was Savini's work on such horror classics as the original 'Day of the Dead', 'Dawn of the Dead', 'Friday the 13th', Creepshow' and 'Texas Chain Saw Massacre II' (to name a few) that 'defined the genre'.

I'm just saying, give credit where credit is due...
Stumblin - 6/28/2010, 2:14 PM
Jaeel White, he was Urkel in Family Matters. Keven is such a racist, next thing you know he'll say that all white people look like Ben Affleck.
loganoneil - 6/28/2010, 2:15 PM
LMAO Stumblin!
Jayisawesome - 6/28/2010, 2:16 PM
I mean atleast you could have gone with someone else i feel offended by you thinking I look like Urkel no really but I understand ur joking so it's ok I will give you an autograph
Stumblin - 6/28/2010, 2:19 PM
:D I love that line, my favorite from that movie.

"Shut up Ben Affleck!"

"I do not look like Ben Affleck."

"Are you white? Then you look like Ben Affleck."
Jayisawesome - 6/28/2010, 2:22 PM
@stumblin lol yeah that line is funny from role models that movie is really funny
CorndogBurglar - 6/28/2010, 4:00 PM
i don't know Jay, you look like Jaleel White in that picture, lol.

but its all good, he kicked ass when he turned himself into Bruce Lee. :)
LEEE777 - 6/28/2010, 4:11 PM
Wicked stuff!
BryEL - 6/28/2010, 4:28 PM
Good, good stuff! Looking forward to this!
Denn1s - 6/28/2010, 4:37 PM
can't wait
UncleDrew - 6/28/2010, 7:00 PM
MAN I WISH I HAD THIS CHANNEL, MY DAD TOOK TOOK OFF THIS CHANNEL AND SOME OTHERS TO SAVE MONEY :(...DOES ANYONE KNOW AN INTERNET SITE WHERE I CAN WATCH THIS SHOW ONLINE WHEN IT COMES ON???
kidcruel - 6/28/2010, 10:59 PM
I love zombies and i love the books, I can't wait for this show!
loganoneil - 6/29/2010, 6:58 AM
No kid, I'm trying to school you - LEARN something, why don't you. You SAY you know about Savini, yet in your article you make it sound as if Nicotero was the end-all, be-all of zombie makeup. IF you TRULY knew about Savini (as you claimed to), you'd know that it was HE and HIS association with Romero (NOT Nicotero) that defined a genre. Do the math - Nicotero was 15 years old when the qunitescential Romero film 'Dawn of the Dead' first came out (which by the way was another SAVINI credit). Pretty hard to 'define the genre' from the 'very beginning' when you're still going through puberty! Next time, do your homework (wikipedia is garbage!) and you won't have to get spanked in public again.

Oh, and Greg Cannom has been nominated 9 times for the Academy Award for Best Makeup and won 4. I chose 'White Chicks' as an example because I figured that would be one of the films you would probably be familiar with.
cookfreeordie - 6/29/2010, 8:00 AM
Why do i get the feeling loganoneil attended Savini's school for make-up artists?...
loganoneil - 6/29/2010, 8:01 AM
Nope, Dick Smith. But I've met Mr. Savini on several occasions. He's a very nice man...
cookfreeordie - 6/29/2010, 9:50 AM
Just giving you a hard time man ;)
loganoneil - 6/29/2010, 1:01 PM
Jojo - If you read all my posts, you would have realized that I was trying to correct Keven. It was Keven (not me) who used the phrase "...since the very beginning when Romero was defining the genre," to describe Mr. Nicotero's work. Not to take away from Mr. Nicotero or his awesome accoplishments, BUT it was Mr. Savini (not Mr. Nicotero) who was responsible for a majority of the zombie genre makeup. You are correct, Savini was not involved with the original 'Night of the Living Dead', but it was his work in 'Dawn' and 'Day' that redefined the overall look.

As for his school, the format he's using is from Dick Smith's course (ever heard of him?). And if it's such a POS, then why does an artist of Mr. Nicotero's caliber make guest lectures there?

I cannot comment on your personal observations, I have never witnessed Mr. Savini acting that way. He has always been polite and cordial - a true professional.

...and 'YES', I have seen 'Chill Factor'.
loganoneil - 6/29/2010, 1:39 PM
No Keven, no one did as you suggested (LMAO!). I'm just saying give credit where credit is due. Savini deserves props for creating the qunitesential zombie look that everyone is familiar with. Nicotero cut his teeth on 'Day' (which I agree with you is one of the BEST zombie films out there) and has gone on to do some OUTSTADING work in the makeup field (an Academy Award for 'Narnia' proves it!). In a way, this whole thing has been 'kept in the family' (so to speak) - Savini helped redefine the zombie look in 'Day of the Dead' and passed the baton to Nicotero, who now has the chance to push the envelope once again...
loganoneil - 6/29/2010, 2:18 PM
Savivi is busy teaching at the Douglas Education Center in PA. According to Jojo, it's a "...a joke and no one that wastes money going there ever go, or has gone on to have a carreer in the industry of make up and practical effect for horror movies (that are any good, i.e. that make any mone i.e. that anyone would want to see)."

Sounds like he didn't get accepted and is a little bitter... (LMFAO!)

I haven't heard that about 'Friday the 13th' - shoud be interesting. You're right though, if they're making a part 2 off of a REBOOT, the FAIL should be epic (but the effects should be good if Tom's involved)!

loganoneil - 6/30/2010, 6:35 AM
Jojo - Why do you have such a beef with Savini? Did he hit on your girlfriend? Did he diss you at a Con? WTF?

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