I met the legend George Romero for the first and sadly only time back on the 12th July 2014. Little did I know that 12 months later I would be co-running an event totally dedicated to his movies and three years later we’d lose the man himself. However I’ve jumped ahead, so lets go back to 5th March 1984. This was the date I first got introduced to Romero’s nightmares through his vision Dawn of the Dead. Wow, what a movie, I was stunned, blown away. I wanted more so I tracked down Night of the living Dead and then later in 1985 I got to see his darkest day of horror, Day of the Dead on the big screen. So by the time I met George in London at the Showmasters event I’d been waiting over 30 years to meet him. I’d come close a couple of times to meet George, notably back in 2009 in Germany but sadly he cancelled. So 2014 came and it was my wife and three daughters who came with me to see the moment I met my hero.
I remember queuing up to get my photo shoot when my family said “we’ve seen him”. Strange thing to say I know but until I actually set eyes on him I wouldn’t believe he was there.
That moment of first seeing George was totally surreal. He was so warm & friendly. I shook his hand and said “I’ve waited 30 years to meet you”. He just smiled & said he was very please to met me. He studied the three posters I’d set before him to sign. Whilst he signed his name I asked where did he get the “When there is no more room in hell the dead will walk the earth” line. He just smiled and said “Ah man that was a long time ago, I cant remember”. He thankfully personalised my Dawn of the Dead poster with my name and stay scared.
Sounds simple right? But at the time George was just signing his name so to get thar personalised really made me happy.
That was George. That was the lasting impression he set on me. Fans First!
The last thing we did was tp get a personnel photo with him. He greeted me with a big smile & warm handshake. I was so happy, my smile says it all.
Weekend of the dead has now been running for over 5 years. I hope George would be happy with the way Weekend of the Dead has honoured his life & work. I know I am. RIP George. Never Forgotten.
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