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The Crazies (1973) Poster

(1973)

Trivia

No Hollywood stunt men were used in The Crazies. Local firemen and licensed fireworks professionals handled all of the action sequences, including the creation and employment of blood squibs.
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Filmed in Evans City, Pennsylvania. Many of the movie's bit players were locals; several of the white-suited soldiers were actually high-school students.
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The burning house at the beginning of the film was a bit of serendipity for the film's crew. The local fire department was burning down an old house to practice putting out the fire, and agreed to let the filmmakers set up and film the event.
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According to George A. Romero the only problem that ever came up with the people of Evans City, where the film was being shot, was about the filming of the final scene. In the conclusion Col. Peckem has to strip down and change clothes before being lifted off by the helicopter. Some of the locals saw the scene as it was being shot and took offense to the sight of a nude man outside. Romero said lawyers had to be called in to resolve the issue.
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In the scene where Clank is going crazy with the rifle in the woods he yells 'another goddamn bug!', ironically moments after a small fly can be seen landing on the upper corner of the camera lens.
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Director George A. Romero makes two cameos in the film; the first as a local being herded into the high school and the second as the head of the president of the United States seen on a monitor screen.
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The budget for The Crazies was approximately $270,000 and it was Romero's first Union film but he also employed a lot of actors from Pittsburgh and non-professionals from Evans City and Zelienople.
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The basis of the film was a script by Romero's friend and co-worker Paul McCollough entitled 'The Mad People'. McCollough gave the script to Romero with his blessing to re-write it and Romero turned out a revised version of it that was made into 'The Crazies'.
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In the opening scene, Special Effects Technician for The Crazies, Regis Survinski plays the insane father who murders his wife and torches the house. The children of Cinematographer S. William Hinzman play the terrified kids in the scene. The house was originally slated for destruction by the local fireman as a practice run and Romero got permission to film the burning of it.
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A lot of the audio mixing in The Crazies, particularly the voices of soldiers and extras and specific sound effects, were completed in post-production in the basement of Romero's Latent Image Studio.
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S. William Hinzman, the films cinematographer, cameos as the local that shoots at the fed's operation station.
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Edith Bell, who plays the lab tech., is the wife of the film's presenter Lee Hessel.
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Of the three Romero movies Richard France was in, this is the only one where he appears "in person." In There's Always Vanilla (1971) and Dawn of the Dead (1978), he's exclusively shown or heard on television.
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