The earliest roots of the genre can be found in Jean Yarbrough's King of the Zombies (1941) and Gordon Douglas's Zombies on Broadway (1945), though both of these films dealt with Haitian-style zombies. While not comedies, George A. Romero's Dawn of the Dead (1978) and Day of the Dead (1985) featured several comedic scenes. An American Werewolf in London (1981) and the Return of the Living Dead series (1985) (especially the first two and the last of the series) can be considered some of the earliest examples of zombie-comedy using the modern zombie. Other early examples include Mr. Vampire, CHUD II: Bud the CHUD (1989), Braindead (1992), and Bio Zombie (1998).
Modern zombie comedies include Zombieland, Gregg Bishop's Dance of the Dead, and Edgar Wright's Shaun of the Dead (a self-dubbed Romantic Zombie Comedy, or RomZomCom). This movie made many in-jokes and references to George A. Romero's earlier Dead films, especially Dawn of the Dead.
Andrew Currie's Fido, Matthew Leutwyler's Dead & Breakfast, and Peter Jackson's Braindead are also examples of zombie comedies. Sam Raimi's Evil Dead II, although a more direct horror film, contains some lighthearted and dark comedy elements, and its sequel, Army of Darkness, is even more comedic. The Evil Dead series does not, however, feature any traditional-style zombies.
Other films that can be considered zombie comedies include:
- Bio Zombie (1998)
- Buck Wild (2013)
- Burying the Ex (2014)
- Cockneys vs Zombies (2013)
- Dance of the Dead (2008)
- DeadHeads (2011)
- Dead Snow (2009)
- Dead Snow: Red vs. Dead (2014), Icelandic-Norwegian
- Fido (2006)
- First Platoon (2013)
- Go Goa Gone, Bollywood (Hindi) movie
- Idle Hands (1999), starring Devon Sawa and Seth Green
- Juan De Los Muertos (2010), Spanish-Cuban film released in the UK and US as Juan of the Dead
- Life After Beth (2014)
- My Boyfriend's Back (1993)
- Night of the Creeps (1986)
- Poultrygeist: Night of the Chicken Dead (2005)
- Redneck Zombies (1986)
- Scouts Guide to the Zombie Apocalypse (2015)
- Tokyo Zombie (2005)
- Trip Ubusan: The Lolas vs. Zombies (2017)
- Warm Bodies (2013)
- Zombie eXs (2013)
- Zombie Strippers (2008)
- Zombieland (2009), starring Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Emma Stone and Abigail Breslin
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- Gartside, Will (September 30, 2004). "Zombie Comedy Slays Audiences". The Badger Herald. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
- Nelson, Resa (2004). "Science Fiction Weekly Interview". SciFi Weekly, Issue 388, paragraph 4. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
- Dellamorte (January 22, 2003). Return of the Living Dead. Classic Horror Review. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
- Edelstein, David (September 23, 2004). "The Importance of Being Undead: A Zombie Comedy of Manners" Archived July 18, 2008, at the Wayback Machine.. Slate Magazine. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
- Smith, Kerry L. (2004-09-22). "Shaun Of The Dead: The World's First Rom-Zom-Com (Romantic Zombie Comedy)?". MTV News. Retrieved 2017-02-16.
- Capt. Xerox (March 16, 2007). "Critics Love the New Zombie Comedy Fido". The Website @ The End Of The Universe. Retrieved April 9, 2007.
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