History 17

October 30, 1980
George Romero sits in with John Carpenter and Jeannot Szwarc (Jaws 2) for another authoritative discussion of horror films on Tom Snyder’s Tomorrow Coast to Coast (formerly The Tomorrow Show), hosted by Hollywood gossip columnist Rona Barrett. Again, a clip from Dawn of the Dead is shown during the programme.

November 1980
Release of Virus – Inferno dei Morti Viventi (a.k.a. Hell of the Living Dead, a.k.a. Zombie Creeping Flesh), a particularly trashy Spanish-Italian zombie flick that not only steals from Goblin’s Dawn of the Dead soundtrack, but also features a S.W.A.T. team very reminiscent of Romero’s movie. In addition, director Bruno Mattei (an Italian exploitation filmmaker notorious for his bad rip-offs) is credited as “Vincent Dawn”.

March 15, 1981
A Dawn of the Dead board game based on the film, manufactured by “Simulations Publications, Inc. (SPI)”, is released in the U.S.

May 1, 1981
UFDC re-release Dawn of the Dead in a theatrical double feature with Charles Kaufman’s crude 1980 “rape and revenge” flick Mother’s Day.

Germany and the U.K. are the first countries in the world to release the film on home video, with each version made available in three different formats (Betamax, VHS and Video 2000).