How I Would Have Done It: World War Z (No Spoilers)

8 Jul

In 2006, World War Z by Max Brooks was released.  I was excited to read it, and it wowed me.  The collection of stories from a world rebuilding was endearing, frightening, vivid, and more than everything I hoped it would be.  As rumors popped up about a movie adaptation, my ideas ran wild with the possibilities.  I tried not to get my hopes up…I tried to stay grounded with my hopes of what this movie would be.  I admit, I am one of the many disappointed by the direction the filmmakers decided to take.

I came across a short article (found here) about Max Brooks about his involvement (none) and thoughts on the movie, and truthfully, it makes me respect him that much more.  He sold the rights, saw his book be transformed into something relatable only by title, and took it in stride, even praising the film.  The short of it is, and I paraphrase is that if you go to see a zombie movie, you’ll enjoy it.  If you go to see World War Z, the book, you’ll probably be disappointed.

Which led me to this week’s edition of How I Would Have Done It.  The past few years, scouring the internet for rumors and facts about the making of the film, I grew continuously more disappointed.  But this isn’t about my opinion of the final product…merely a reflection of my thoughts towards how it could have been a masterpiece.  So without further ado:

How I Would Have Done It: World War Z

Part of the charm in World War Z for me were the many different points of view.  If you haven’t read the book, it’s centered around an agent of the United Nations Postwar Commission, going from site to site to talk to survivors.  Some of these survivors were average citizens, doctors, military personnel, and government officials.  They recount their stories to the agent, and through it, you learn how different parts of the world, as well as social hierarchy were affected by the outbreak of the zombie virus.

These stories would have been the perfect landscape on which to build a great ensemble movie, with completely different casts and directors, linked together by the agent of the UNPC conducting his interviews.  I, myself would have been excited to see some of the greatest veteran directors (Scorsese, Jackson, Tarantino, Rodriguez) or some of the newer, younger directors (Nolan, Webb, Snyder, Vaughn) tackle this project and bring their own flavor to each story.  Each story could last about 20-30 minutes, and it would be great way to get an eclectic cast full of great names to get involved and jump on board for what could possibly be the most exciting take on zombies yet.  (Who wouldn’t want to see the Battle of Yonkers directed by Peter Jackson?)

I do see this as being a challenge to put together…and I’d guess it would probably cost way too much to actually come to fruition, I still get excited at the idea, painting it out in my head.

I agree with Max Brooks about the movie being just fine if you don’t relate it to the book, however, I, as a big fan of the book, want to purchase a ticket to see an adaptation, not a completely different story just wearing its title.

What do you think?  If you like my idea, hate my idea, tell us all about it.  What were your thoughts on the movie?  The book?  Any other ideas how World War Z could have made it to the top of a long list of great zombie flicks?  Let us know.

Also, if there is anything in the film world on your mind you would like to discuss, feel free to send your ideas to


Until then,

Safe Watching.


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