(known as Zombie Flesh Eaters 2
in the UK) is the in-name-only 1988
followup to Zombi 2
, itself an unofficial sequel to 1979
's Dawn of the Dead
(released in Italy as Zombi
). Beyond its title, Zombi 3
has little to no relation with the characters or plotlines of Zombi
, Zombi 2
or in fact any subsequent "Zombi"
films. Its only major similarity is in that it is another zombie horror film
. It is also a much less revered film than its predecessor was, generally hailed only for being "so bad it's good".
The theft of a biological weapon from a tropical military base leads to the transformation many of the island's inhabitants into flesh eating zombies.
Though Lucio Fulci
is cited as director in the film's opening credits, Fulci really only directed portions of the film, bowing out after a few weeks of filming. This has been largely attributed to an illness that was aggravated by the Philippines
filming location. The footage amounted to approximately 70 minutes worth and was found wanting.
Bruno Mattei was asked to step in and the resultant film, with its running zombies and a more sci-fi/action-oriented story, ended up resembling Mattei's films much more closely than anything Fulci had done up until then. In a filmed interview found on the Shriek Show DVD release, Mattei estimated that Fulci's surviving contributions constitute approximately 50 minutes of the finished film.
was released to theatres on July 29, 1988. Although it has gained some notoriety over the years, it has never received an official theatrical release outside of Italy.
In the United States, Zombi 3
was released as a special edition from Media Blasters
' Shriek Show
division, who released the uncut version of the film. The film used many sources including VHS footage in order to be uncut. It also features trailers and interviews. The disc was then re-released with a commentary track. People who bought the earlier disc were told to mail in their disc to receive a replacement, but many orders when unfulfilled.
In the United Kingdom, Zombie Flesh Eaters 2 is available as part of Vipco's Screamtime Collection. The only special features are a picture gallery and promotional trailer.
Zombi 3's place in the "Zombi" films
- Lucio Fulci begins to film an original zombie film with a mystic, voodoo-oriented script written by Dardano Sacchetti.
- During filming, Dario Argento's cut of George A. Romero's film Dawn of the Dead is released to theatres in Italy under the title Zombi. The film is a huge worldwide success.
- Fulci is instructed by his producers to film some new script changes which serve to unofficially connect it to Romero's film. Fulci's film was retitled Zombi 2 in Italy, but is released as Zombie in the US, Zombie Flesh Eaters in the UK and "Woodoo-Schreckensinsel der Zombies" in Germany.
- Lucio Fulci is asked to film a script for the sequel to Zombi 2. Fulci reportedly completed 70-or-so minutes of film before leaving due to health problems.
- Writer Fragasso's friend Bruno Mattei was brought on board to do reshoots, and to finish the film. The result was released to Italian theatres in July, and later to home video internationally.