Image from Universal
8. Real amputees played zombies in the film.
The special FX used in 2004’s Dawn of the Dead were surprisingly very well done. The blood and gore looked very convincing and horrifying, and nothing really came across as too cheesy or unrealistic. One thing that looked especially good, though, were the zombies missing limbs. It really looked as if they had lost their appendages to the undead.
So how did they capture these awesome FX? What’d they do to make it look so real? The answer is shockingly simple. All the FX team had to do was apply some fake blood to real amputee actors, and there you go— limb-less zombies are on the screen, making the experience seem all the more genuine. The biters missing limbs were some of the scariest ones.
This is far from an original concept, however. Many other movies have gone this same path before, always with excellent results. One particular example I can think of is the cult classic The Toxic Avenger, which featured the titular superhero ripping a villain’s arm clean off his body to attack him with it. Because a one-armed actor played the bad guy, the scene looked so real, despite how corny it was.
Next: House of the Dead nearly killed the movie.