“Zombies are exactly what Pride & Prejudice needed, I think.” So Matt Smith succinctly sums up the appeal of Pride And Prejudice And Zombies. The adaptation of the hit novel that inserts the living dead into the classic work of English literature hits theaters this February, and to celebrate Screen Gems took to the Hall H stage at Comic-Con, with cast and creators, to talk about it at length.
Attending were the book’s author Seth Grahame-Smith and film director Burr Steers, along with cast members Sam Riley, Matt Smith, Bella Heathcote, Jack Huston, Douglas Booth, and Lily James. Once out, they debuted the first official trailer, a lengthy look at the genteel and yet gritty setting that pairs earnest, authentic portrayals of Victorian manners with deadly arts of combat against the undead — and plenty of viscous gore. Honestly, it’s enough to make me look forward to seeing Bridget Jones’ Diary And Werewolves in 60 years.
As for the discussion, it was a somewhat stilted affair with little of note said about the film, though Grahame-Smith was effusive about the production, noting that he was pleased by how the film plays things straight, never “leaning on the joke.” Discussion also touched on how the film was made to look as much like an authentic Jane Austen adaptation as possible, any other version of Pride And Prejudice, just with more killing.
Sony gave audiences a glimpse of the attendees from backstage.
That panel was followed by a short panel devoted to Patient Zero, a film that appears to be a pastiche of some of the most iconic works of zombie fiction, with elements influenced by 28 Days Later, World War Z, Day Of The Dead and the novel I Am Legend. Whether it works or feels like a retread remains to be seen, but a trailer that debuted today during the panel is at least intriguing. It stars Smith, Game Of Thrones alums Natalie Dormer and John Bradley, Stanley Tucci, Clive Standem and Agnes Deyn and will be out in 2016.