The zom- com where a trio of scouts earn their badges in creative killing
Boy Scouts battle the undead in Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse.
IT’S AN ’ 80S THROWBACK
When it comes to modern zombie comedies there are two titans: Shaun Of The Dead and Zombieland. Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse distinguishes itself from those noughties classics by taking inspiration from a different decade entirely. “I got really excited after I read the script because it had a very ’ 80s vibe to it, which I really was into,” director Christopher Landon tells Red Alert. “I grew up on Gremlins and Goonies and Monster Squad, so I thought this was an opportunity to make something like that.”
A FUTURE X- MAN STARS
Tye Sheridan, soon to be seen as a young Cyclops in X- Men: Apocalypse, plays Ben, best friend to fellow Boy Scouts Carter and Augie. Luckily the zompocalypse hits during their final camping trip. “Their relationship is the anchor of the film because the concept is so outlandish it was really important to have a story about this friendship,” Landon says. “Ben and Carter have outgrown it, but Augie doesn’t want to let go of scouting. For me, that was the fun of the story – getting to see how a friendship implodes then gets rebuilt over the course of one night.”
THE ZOMBIES HAVE PERSONALITY
Forget the faceless ( sometimes literally) walkers of most undead movies, the zombies in Scouts Guide have their own distinct charms. “Our zombies have personalities that they’ve brought over from the other side,” Landon says. “We had a massive list of different types: yoga- mom zombies, a zombie wearing a YOLO t- shirt...”
IT’S GOT SCARES TOO
The film is primarily a comedy, but having worked on the Paranormal Activity series Landon knows the power of a good fright. “It was fun to be ridiculous, and it was great to not have to be found- footage!” he says. “But I always tried to keep comedy in the mix because if you’re laughing with them you’re going to be fearful for them later on.”
THEY GET CREATIVE
Being a Boy Scout proves surprisingly useful at the end of days. “It was fun coming up with ways to use their skills,” Landon says. “For instance, when Ben gets trapped in a jail cell he whittles a mop into a spear and uses that as a weapon. It’s funny because we’ve had zero cooperation from the Boy Scouts of America. They hate this movie, I’m sure. But I was like, ‘ This is the best thing that’s ever happened to them. They’ve had so much bad press, but we make them look cool!’”
Scouts Guide To The Zombie Apocalypse opens on 6 November.