- Cast: Brad Pitt, Eric West, Matthew Fox, James Badge Dale, David Morse, Mireille Enos, David Andrews, Elyes Gabel, Julia Levy-Boeken, Katia Bokor, Abigail Hargrove, Trevor White, Vicky Araico, Mustafa Harris, Katrina Vasilieva, Féodor Atkine, Kingsley Ben-Adir, John Gordon Sinclair, Sterling Jerins, Nick Bartlett, Okezie Morro, Fabrizio Zacharee Guido, Daniella Kertesz, Peter Basham, Ann Ogbomo, Hugh Terry
- Director: Marc Forster
- Writers: Matthew Michael Carnahan, J. Michael Straczynski
- Producers: Ian Bryce, Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Brad Pitt
- Associate Producer: Jillian Kugler
- Executive Producers: David Ellison, Dana Goldberg, Tim Headington, Graham King, Bradford Simpson
- Art Directions: Jon Billington, Alan Gilmore
- Casting: Kate Dowd
- Costume Design: Mayes C. Rubeo
- D.O.P.: Robert Richardson
- Editor: Matt Chesse
- Makeup: Karen Cohen
- Music: Marco Beltrami
- Production Design: Nigel Phelps
- Set Decoration: Jennifer Williams
Based on Max Brooks' best-selling novel "World War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War," the story revolves around United Nations employee Gerry Lane (Pitt), who traverses the world in a race against time to stop the Zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments and threatening to decimate humanity itself. Enos plays Gerry's wife Karen Lane; Kertesz is his comrade in arms, Segen.
- Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1
- Filming Locations: Budapest, Hungary; Falmouth, UK; Glasgow, Scotland; Malta
- MPAA Warning: Intense frightening zombie sequences, violence and disturbing images
- Production Budget: $125 million
- Production Companies: Plan B Entertainment, Apparatus Productions, GK Films, Hemisphere Media Capital, Latina Pictures, Paramount Pictures, Skydance Productions, UTV Motion Pictures
- Production Schedule: 15 June 2011 - November 2011
2013 Guide Analysis: "With zombie apocalypse tales, the story is almost always kept to a small scale with only minor glimpses of the larger event. The focus sticks with a group of people, usually somewhere in a non-coastal American city, hiding out in suburban and rural locales to keep away from the undead hordes. It is also often a deadly serious affair with only the occasional bit of black comedy or satire snuck in.
Max Brooks' "World War Z" novel on the other hand was a fun and clever read because it was all about the bigger picture. Fusing horror with political satire, the book consisted of several dozen chapters with each being an interview of a different subject about their experiences relating to the event. Through these recollections from civilians, soldiers and officials from around the globe, we learn how the outbreak started, how different countries and religions reacted to the problem, how a solution was found, and how the world order was affected in the process.
It's the perfect material for a big budget anthology TV series with each episode based on one of the short stories. Instead, Brad Pitt's Plan B production company secured the rights and hired "Babylon 5" creator J. Michael Straczynski to turn it into a feature. It's a challenge as it essentially requires a massive re-write and shift in focus from the book, turning the barely discussed UN interviewer character into the main lead.
Initially budgeted at a considerable $125 million, this was shot over the course of much of the second half of 2011 in various European locales. It was a notably troubled production, made even more infamous last year when Paramount pushed it back six months from a proposed December release to a June 2013 date. Damon Lindelof was brought in to re-write the final act, a job he ultimately handed over to Drew Goddard, and a whopping seven weeks of additional shooting was scheduled in Budapest.
With a budget now pushing towards $200 million, the plans for a proposed WWZ trilogy look unlikely to come to fruition unless this proves a massive worldwide hit. Two months ago the film's first trailer was released online and caused all kinds of arguments for its treatment of the armies of the undead. These were not groups of running people in make-up, but rather massive, physics-defying computer-animated tsunamis. The scale was impressive, but right now too many lingering questions are slightly dampening both enthusiasm and excitement for the project. Hopefully it will all come together."