We're getting closer and closer to the October premiere of The Walking Dead, and so far all signs point to the television adaptation of Robert Kirkman's comic being nothing short of amazing. We've already received a sneak peek at the undead adversaries our protagonist Rick Grimes (Andrew Lincoln) and the other survivors are going up against. Now, thanks to a behind-the-scenes clip from AMC, we've got a first-hand look at how KNB EFX created one of the title characters.
Many a jaw dropped when the first production image featuring one of The Walking Dead's zombies was released. In the video below, KNB's Greg Nicotero explains the process of creating that character (affectionately dubbed "Bicycle Girl"). Fans of the comic will recognize her as one of the first zombies Rick encounters after waking up from his coma.
Nicotero mentions this is the first zombie we'll see in The Walking Dead's debut episode and if that's true, I'm a little disappointed we're losing the moment where Rick opens the door to the hospital's cafeteria (seriously - if you haven't read this comic do yourself a favor and pick up the first volume).
Still, this is absolutely top-notch work and the prosthetics look great even out of context. From the beginning, it was obvious that everyone involved with The Walking Dead had an incredible amount of affection and respect for the source material. Although we know there will be moments that the show goes in different directions than the comic, this is clearly staying very true to the tone and spirit of the books.
Check out the video and see for yourself:
I love that they're casting actors who are already extremely thin so that when the prosthetics are built up they still look realistic. I know it's not exactly a revolutionary idea, but it really helps sell the effect. I remember KNB doing a very similar-looking piece for one of the zombies in Land of the Dead and it still blows my mind.
Zombies are running rampant in pop-culture at the moment and while I get the impression there are many folks burnt out on the trend, it's important to remember that most of these stories tend to focus on the initial outbreak where as The Walking Dead isn't really about a zombie apocalypse - it's about how the characters survive in its aftermath.
It's less about eviscerating the undead (although there is plenty of that), and more about what the prolonged exposure to that sort of violence and the constant threat of death does to a person's psyche. The Walking Dead's strength is in its core group of characters and that's something the cast & crew of the show really seem to understand.
The Walking Dead would never have worked as a film, and I'm thrilled that AMC appears to be so fearless about not pulling any punches and giving this story the treatment it deserves.
The show premieres worldwide this October on AMC.