Black SplatNight of the Living Dead (1968)

"Shoot 'em in the head, that's a sure way to kill 'em!”

Night of the Living Dead - Sheriff McClelland reports on the zombie infestation

Description: Advice of Pennsylvania policeman Sheriff McClelland (George Kosana) in the cult horror flick Night of the Living Dead (1968).

In the film, a satellite falls from space and contaminates an area near Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with a strange radiation that causes the recently deceased to rise from the grave and seek the living as a food source.

The first zombie appears as a brother and sister visit a cemetery to see their father's grave. Knowing his sister (Judith O'Dea) finds graveyards creepy, the brother taunts his sibling, saying. "They're coming to get you, Barbra." Suddenly, the body of a recently deceased man approaches and kills the brother. The girl flees and finds the safety of a farmhouse.

While Barbara and others who sought the safety of the same farmhouse struggle to ward off a horde of hungry zombies, the local law enforcement and volunteers scower the countryside to locate and destroy this menacing army of walking dead.

Sheriff McClelland who is responsible for coordinating the roundup and killing of the flesh-eating zombies is interviewed by local TV Reporter Bill Cardille. The following is a transcript of the interview.

Night of the Living Dead - TV Reporter interviews Sheriff McClelland

Bill: Chief...Chief McClelland -- how's everything going?
Chief: Aw, things aren't goin' too bad. The men are takin' it pretty good.
Bill: Chief, do you think we'll be able to defeat these things?
Chief: Well, we killed 19 of 'em today, right in this area... these last three we caught tryin' to claw their way into an abandoned shed. They musta thought somebody was in there... there wasn't, though. We heard 'em makin' all kindsa noise -- we came over, beat 'em off and blasted 'em down.
Bill: Chief, if I were surrounded by 6 or 8 of these things, would I stand a chance with them?
Chief: Well, there's no problem -- if you had a gun, shoot 'em in the head, that's a sure way to kill 'em. If you don't, get yourself a club or a torch, beat 'em or burn 'em, they go up pretty easy.
Bill: Well, Chief McClelland, how long do you think it'll take you until you get the situation under control?
Chief: Well that's pretty hard to say -- we don't know how many of 'em there are. We know when we find 'em we can kill 'em.
Bill: Are they slow-moving, Chief?
Chief: Yeah, they're dead, they're... all messed up.
Bill: Well, with time, would you say you oughtta be able to wrap this up in 24 hours?
Chief: Well, we don't really know. We know we'll probably be into it most of the night, probably into the early mornin'. We're workin' our way toward Willard, and we'll team up with the National Guard over there, and then we'll be able to give a more definite view.
Bill: Thank you very much, Chief McClelland. This is Bill Cardille, WIIC-TV 11 News.

Note: In the film The Ghost Breakers (1940) Richard Carlson as Jeff Montgomery explains the undead, saying, “A zombie has no will of his own. You see them sometimes walking around blindly with dead eyes, following orders, not knowing what they do, not caring.” His colleague Larry Lawrence (Bob Hope) quips, “You mean like Democrats?”

On a 1989 episode of THE SIMPSONS Bartholomew “Bart” Jo-Jo Simpson (Nancy Cartwright) says, “Oh my God! The dead have risen and are voting Republican!”

The term "Walkers" is used to describe the reanimated corpses wandering in and about the city of Atlanta, Georgia on the AMC TV series WALKING DEAD (2010). To kill one of these "Walkers" the script writers use the same advice as given by a research scientist (Frank Doak) in the film Night of the Living Dead (1958): “Kill the brain and you kill the ghoul.”

The reporter in the film, Bill Cardille was also known as "Chilly Billy," the host of CHILLER THEATER, a late night Saturday program that showed horror and science fiction films in the Pittsburgh region from 1963 to 1983.

Night of the Living Dead - Movie Poster

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