The Film4 Frightfest horror-thon takes place this bank holiday weekend and amongst all the genre offerings it will feature the presentation of the inaugural Variety Award to special effects and make-up guru Greg Nicotero. One of Nicotero’s first significant pieces of work was on George A. Romero’s zombie-chomping Day of the Dead in 1985, so we’ve opened the archive file to see what the Examiners thought of the undead classic.
The third of Romero’s series of ‘Dead’ films was received for classification in April 1986. Day of The Dead was part of a genre which was now very familiar territory for BBFC Examiners. There was some support for passing the film uncut but the overall decision was to make a minimal amount of cuts in order to decrease the quantity and detail of the gory deaths. Cannibalism as a theme is described in the report as an area where “we have always been cautious”, and a reference to the recently introduced 1984 Video Recordings Act shows how the legislation had become a key part of the consideration process for the BBFC.
After cuts were made Day Of The Dead was given an ’18′ certificate, and the same cut version was released on video at ’18′ later that same year. Cuts were waived for an ’18′ certificate video release in 1996, and the film remains at ’18′ today.