Exploring the world of George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead

Watch Night of the Living Dead

The mission of Stories of the Living Dead is to celebrate the independent filmmaking legacy of Night of the Living Dead, and its creator George A. Romero

This is an open invitation to create a short film based on and inspired by the classic film, which will be screened in Fall 2022.

Why Night of the Living Dead?

How an oversight created a genre

The Manhattan-based Walter Reade Organization agreed to show the film uncensored, but changed the title from Night of the Flesh Eaters to Night of the Living Dead because a film had already been produced under a similar title to the former. While changing the title, the copyright notice was accidentally deleted from the early releases of the film.” – Wikipedia, Night of the Living Dead

One simple oversight, simply forgetting to add a copyright notice to the title card, plunged Night of the Living Dead into the public domain, which allowed anyone to release, distribute, and screen the film without the need to pay royalties to the creator.  While this was a financial disaster for the filmmakers, nearly half a century later it’s easy to see just how much zombies have become a part of our popular culture — which may not have been possible without this little mistake which allowed others to use the film’s major antagonistic force, the zombie. Due to Night of the Living Dead’s status in the public domain, filmmakers have a unique opportunity to create art based on the film without violating copyright laws.

Learn more about Night of the Living Dead and it’s public domain status here.

What is Stories of the Living Dead?

Stories of the Living Dead is a short film anthology filmmaking project organized by Vidjam. This project is meant as an opportunity to celebrate the rich history of independent filmmaking in Pennsylvania, George A. Romero, and his classic film.

We are looking for filmmakers to create a black-and-white short film anywhere between two and fifteen minutes long based in the universe of Night of the Living Dead.  The films will be screened in theaters and online during the Fall of 2022.

What are the Guidelines?

  1. Your film must be inspired by George A. Romero’s Night of the Living Dead, exploring the world established in that film.  Note: George A. Romero’s other “of the Dead” films, including Dawn of the Dead and Day of the Dead, are not within the public domain.

  2. Films must be submitted in black & white.

  3. Your film must be between two and fifteen minutes long.

  4. You must own, have permission to use, or have the appropriate rights for all video and audio in your film.

  5. Film must be submitted by August 28th, 2022.

  6. If you feel stuck or have any questions, please contact us at sam@vidjam.org. We are here to help you succeed and make your film!

Not a filmmaker?

Are you a writer, musician, or artist looking to contribute your short stories or art? 

Send an email to sam@vidjam.org!

How can you be involved?

2021 & 2022

August 28th, 2022

Fall 2022

Join Vidjam for Night of the Living Dead screenings and workshops throughout the year while you are producing your short film.

Submit your film to www.vidjam.org/submit

Join Vidjam for Stories of the Living Dead screenings online and in theaters!  Screenings will be announced in 2022!

Stay up to date

Join the Vidjam discord, more information at www.vidjam.org/discord.