Zombie Awareness Month happens in May because it is the month that provided the setting for the 1968 zombie classic Night of the Living Dead, the film that launched the zombie film genre. Here’s the story of Night of the Living Dead from the St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture — an online encyclopedia that the library subscribes to.
In October 1968 a low-budget horror film titled Night of the Living Dead, directed and cowritten by the independent filmmaker George Romero, opened in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, far from Hollywood and the mainstream cinema. Shot in the Pennsylvania countryside using mostly amateur actors and boasting ludicrously low production values, Romero’s short black-and-white film nevertheless managed to leave its first viewers disturbed, even traumatized[…] Decades later the film is considered a classic. Recognized for its cultural significance, the film was placed in the National Film Registry in 1999 by the Library of Congress.
You can read the full article, complete with a still from the movie, here. If you have a library card, you can use the St. James Encyclopedia yourself to find articles about famous and influential movies, music, authors, and shows — both with and without zombies.
— Jane S.