Tom Savini was the guy. Dawn Of The Dead, Friday The 13th – they were two movies that ushered in the “splatter era” of special effects. I became a fan of Tom based on the work on those movies. I remember getting fake ID for the first time I watched Dawn Of The Dead, and seeing the head explode, and seeing the zombie bite the woman in the neck. I almost vomited I was so horrified. But I couldn’t take my eyes off the screen. Then you flash forward to 1984 and I find out I’m working with him on Day Of The Dead. And he was the guy.
Nicotero went from admiring Tom Savini films to working on them.