This one’s flown under the radar, but a new Netflix movie, “Army of the Dead,” features at least three of our favorite things: Casino heists, Las Vegas and zombies.
“Army of the Dead” is written and directed by Zack Snyder and stars Dave Bautista.
Snyder directed “300” and “Justice League,” among others. Snyder’s zombie cred includes his first feature film, a remake of “Dawn of the Dead.”
Dave Bautista is best known for the hilarious “My Spy.” He may have also been in a couple of superhero movies.
The film features a number of other performers whose names we don’t recognize, including Ella Purnell, Ana de la Reguera, Garret Dillahunt, Raul Castillo, Omari Hardwick, Tig Notaro, Nora Arnezeder, Matthias Schweighofer, Samantha Win and Theo Rossi.
“Army of the Dead” cost $90 million, or about nine times the asking price for the Artisan hotel.
The story involves a group of mercenaries who plot a Las Vegas casino heist during a zombie outbreak. Oh, Hollywood.
The twist (beyond the fact there’s a zombie outbreak) is the heist is done on behalf of the casino owner. How that qualifies as a “heist,” we have no idea, but “heist” just makes everything sound more exciting.
Zack Snyder has described the film as “fun and epic and crazy and bonkers in the best possible way.”
Snyder says, “It will be the most kick-ass, self-aware—but not in a wink-to-the-camera way—balls-to-the-wall zombie freak show that anyone has ever seen.”
While “Army of the Dead” seems to be set in Las Vegas, we couldn’t find any evidence of it being filmed here.
Principal photography took place in L.A. and Albuquerque. Parts of the film were shot in the now-closed Atlantic Club Casino Hotel in Atlantic City. What the hell, Zack Snyder?
No release date for “Army of the Dead” has been announced. Signs point to a 2021 release, but we’re hoping for Halloween 2020.
Read more about “Army of the Dead” and we’re hoping the filmmakers didn’t squander an opportunity to make Las Vegas the star of the show rather than merely a backdrop.
Just as everything’s better with zombies, everything’s better with Vegas.
Update (10/2/20): Netflix has announced a spin-off prequel, “Army of the Dead: Lost Vegas.” Read more about this anime series.
Update (2/25/21): Netflix has announced “Army of the Dead” will air May 21, 2021. Here’s a still from the teaser.
While we’re at it, here’s the trailer. Devastated Strip, check. Slot machines, check. Showgirls, check. Liberace and Elvis look-alikes, check. Las Vegas sign, check. Heist, check.