Francine Parker: What are they doing? Why do they come here?
Stephen: Some kind of instinct. Memory of what they used to do. This was an important place in their lives.
While the zombies in George A. Romero’s classic 1978 film, Dawn of the Dead, may not have known why they shambled to the Monroeville Mall, countless fans DO head there with a specific purpose. Many adoring fans visit just to say they’ve been fortunate enough to experience walking around the mall used as the main filming location for Romero’s Dawn of the Dead.
Unfortunately fans will soon have one less reason to visit the iconic Monroeville Mall located in Monroeville, Pennsylvania. We recently discovered on Facebook that plans are underway to remove the small bridge seen on screen. This is especially sad because the footbridge is one of the last recognizable portions of the mall left for Dawn fans to personally experience, touch and enjoy. Even more troubling is the fact that the bridge could simply be discarded instead of being treated like the piece of zombie and horror film history it is!
Before we go any further we should say we haven’t been able to verify things first hand. While we have absolutely no reason to NOT believe what we’ve heard, we feel obligated to point out we’re simply reporting what we’ve read via social media. You can view the Facebook community page post we’re referring to here:
As Father Time dictates, things change over the years. Much of the mall, the setting and main filming location for Dawn of the Dead, looks vastly different from the footage that was shot back in 1977. The only original anchor store left is J.C. Penny and even it was relocated from its original location near the center of the mall. Most of the original J.C. Penny area seen on screen was demolished and removed to make room for a movie theater in 2012. To put it bluntly, the bridge is one of the last remaining recognizable portions of the mall that is featured in the film.
We’ll keep our thoughts and comments about mall business decisions to ourselves. The bottom line is this iconic bridge is being removed. As much as that decision boggles our mind and breaks our heart . . . the decision has reportedly already been made. Zombie fans should now focus on making sure this small piece of cinematic history is preserved and relocated to a new home where it will be cherished and appreciated by fans for years to come. There really is no better home than the Living Dead Museum or perhaps even the Heinz History Museum. Either one is certainly a much better home than a dumpster or scrap pile.
Countless fans make the journey to the Monroeville Mall specifically to visit the former filming location and to walk across the bridge. If we act NOW we might be able to help ensure the bridge is preserved and relocated so fans can continue to enjoy and appreciate this piece of cult film history. The best part is saving it could cost little more than a few moments of your time!
Judging from the Save the Dawn of the Dead Bridge Facebook Community Page, there isn’t currently a need for funds to save the bridge. They mainly need fans to raise awareness and help spread the word. If enough people voice their opinion and share their thoughts on why the bridge should be saved and relocated it just might happen!
OK. There is one small catch here; we need to move FAST. From what we’ve read the pond area has already been drained and the removal of the bridge could be just days away. So what can you do to help out?
First, sign the online petition located here:
You can also help spread the word by liking and sharing the Save the Dawn of the Dead Bridge Community Page on Facebook. Commenting and showing your support there and here on this blog post will definitely help the cause as well.
What are your thoughts? Should the bridge be preserved? Why or why not? If you do want to see the bridge relocated where do you think it should go? Our vote is for The Living Dead Museum! Let us know what you think in the comments section below!