Zack Snyder’s 2004 Dawn of the Dead was one of the best remakes to come out of the explosion around the time that saw virtually every recognizable horror property get a modern update, and his feature directorial debut instantly marked him out as a filmmaker with a distinct style and keen eye for a visual flourish.
Netflix’s Army of the Dead has seen his career come full circle after seventeen years, as Snyder returned to the zombie genre with close to two decades of experience helming effects-driven blockbusters under his belt, and it’s no coincidence that they’re comfortably two of the better movies he’s made.
There were many theories doing the rounds that Army of the Dead existed in the same universe as Dawn prior to its release, something Snyder was quick to dismiss, but an Easter Egg has now been discovered that ties the apocalyptic heist thriller directly to the events that transpired when Sarah Polley, Ving Rhames and the gang found themselves trapped in a mall with hordes of the undead massing outside, as you can see below.
Yo Zack Snyder said that his first Zombie venture "Dawn Of The Dead" is not related to "Army Of The Dead", it's not a direct sequel but this news article in the movie says otherwise.
"New Information Released About '04 Zombie Outbreak In Milwaukee"
Cool Easter Egg or What? pic.twitter.com/XQp2uXq3ah
— Movies That Maher w The Viking (@MoviesThatMaher) May 23, 2021
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Of course, the reason why the director was probably keen to dismiss the notion that Army and Dawn were connected was a legal and contractual one, given that the latter was produced and distributed by Universal who still own the rights, and any mentions by name would open Netflix up to potential action.
However, it’s hardly the most subtle reference in naming a zombie outbreak that just so happened to take place in the same year and in the same city as his Dawn of the Dead, but it’s still a neat little Easter Egg for Snyder fans to pick up on during Army of the Dead nonetheless.