The Day I Played A Zombie


In 1985, I was sent to a limestone cave in luxurious Beaver Falls, Pennsylvania, where I was made up for hours until I ended up covered with even more pustules and oozy shit than when I arrived.

I played a zombie in George Romero‘s eagerly awaited tri-quel Day of the Dead.

Romero instructed us to not play your stereotypical zombies, with the usual arms outstretched and eyes bugging.

So when he said “action,” I came up with a wholly unique approach that I was sure would nab awards and kudos.

I basically did Diana Ross, with arms in the air and lots of fancy hip swiveling. I was the gayest, most glamorous zombie to hit Beaver Falls in weeks.

After he yelled “cut,” Romero singled me out from the crowd, and I was certain it was so he could sing my zombie praises.

Instead, he said to kindly can the shtick.

Horrified, I went back to the hands outstretched and eyes bugging.

And the movie bombed.

As a bonus, I’m including a shot of another outlandish sci-fi stunt I tried — spoofing Jennifer Holliday‘s immortal Dreamgirls number, “And I Am Telling You …”

When the eyes were open, believe me, they were bugging!

Photos: Marc Weiss