Almost twenty years prior to this month’s release of Army of the Dead, Zack Snyder made his debut on the horror scene with 2004’s remake of George A. Romero classic Dawn of the Dead, and what’s interesting about Army is that Snyder has been working on it since around the time Dawn was released. As these things sometimes go, it took a bit longer than expected.
Is there any chance these two movies exist in the same universe? While Army of the Dead doesn’t outright mention the events of Dawn of the Dead in any capacity, it’s at least worth noting that Snyder did manage to work a little Easter egg nod to his Dawn remake into his return to the zombie sub-genre. And the blink-and-miss-it moment suggests a connection.
At around the 27-minute mark in the movie, the Twitter account @MoviesThatMaher spotted and tweeted out, Tig Notaro’s character is scrolling through her phone, and she briefly stops on a news article with a very interesting headline. “New information released about ’04 zombie outbreak in Milwaukee,” the headline reads, before Notaro quickly scrolls past it.
What’s the significance here? Well, Snyder’s Dawn of the Dead was released (and presumably set) in 2004, and wouldn’t know it, the film’s events played out in Milwaukee, Wisconsin.
In all likelihood, this is little more than Snyder having a little fun and paying tribute to his first zombie movie in his second zombie movie, so I’m not sure we can actually consider Army of the Dead to be any kind of sequel to Dawn of the Dead. After all, the zombie takeover seems to be quite new in Army, with the events of Dawn never mentioned beyond this Easter egg.
But even still, it’s an amusing little nod that suggests maybe, just maybe, both of Snyder’s zombie movies exist in the same world. And we’ll be thinking about that for the rest of the day.
Oh and there are also Robot Zombies in Army of the Dead. Did you spot them?!