George A. Romero, Father of the Zombie Movie, Has Died at 77

When you think of what a zombie movie is, you have George A. Romero to thank for that.

While the term “zombie” existed previously, even in movies, it was his 1968 indie horror masterpiece, Night of the Living Dead, that gave us the iconic version of the undead monsters we know today. Romero continued from there with the satirical 1978 follow-up Dawn of the Dead plus the sequels Day of the Dead, Land of the Dead, Diary of the Dead, Survival of the Dead and the upcoming Road of the Dead, which arrives next year directed by Matt Birman from Romero’s script.

In addition to his zombie classics, Romero also directed the horror movies Creepshow, an anthology inspired by old horror comic books, The Crazies, Monkey Shines, The Dark Half, Knightriders and others. And he influenced so many more, including remakes of his own zombie movies and other zombie movies that are merely part of his legacy.

With so many filmmakers being influenced by Romero, he also acted in the work of his followers’, including The Silence of the Lambs. And he appears in numerous documentaries about his work and horror in general, including Birth of the Living Dead and Doc of the Dead.

Romero died in his sleep this morning after a long battle with lung cancer, according to the Los Angeles Times.

Here are some of his most memorable movies:

Night of the Living Dead (1968):

Dawn of the Living Dead (1978)

Creepshow (1982):

Survival of the Dead (2009):

And more: