For the love of zombies? There has been a huge increase in the popularity of zombie inspired movies. The people have spoken once again in support with the newest zombie picture raising $263 million within the first ten days at the box office. What could have possibly made this zombie movie a better grossing film than many that came before it? Well, one possibility is due to the fact that it was an adaptation of a novel written by Max Brooks back in 2006. The funny thing about this possibly playing a factor is that this movie doesn’t correspond in the least to the book. There is always going to be artistic privilege that comes in to play when creating a film adaptation of a novel but in this movie, almost the entire book was scrapped. So why was World War Z so popular?
The best way to approach the question of why is to revisit where its origins came from. When reading a well written novel, it is easy for a person to transcend the writing on the pages and use their imagination to envision what is being read. The use of adjectives and the descriptions of characters, environments, actions, smells, etc all play a key role in directing the reader to this alternate reality. Writers provide the outline for readers to see what they want but it is the reader who interprets and creates that alternate reality and brings it life. So again World War Z, what happened? Marc Forster decided to jump in to this alternate reality and focus on one character, Gerry Lane and bring his story to life. There are very few movies that successfully pulled off jumping from story to story as the novel does. The plain fact is when it comes to the entertainment world, history has proven that people enjoy seeing stories with a plot, some action, some sort of lesson or meaning and some main characters; something they can follow more easily. World War Z gave the people exactly what they wanted using the idea of this zombie inhabited world that Max Brooks thought up and Brad Pitt probably didn’t hurt either.
Novels have become tools for the ambitious to make masterpieces and in this case box office hits.