Zombies hit South Bend
"Shooting in L.A. has its pros and cons," Olesker says. "You get a lot of talent, a lot of professionals, but it can be a nightmare. And what you have to go through with contracts and with permits, and you can go out of your mind."
So, zombies are coming to South Bend -- if Olesker can get financial backing to shoot a pilot, and if a national network buys the product.
A tough sell? Probably, although Olesker has one thing going for him when he makes his sales pitch -- a hot commodity evidenced by a zombie film, "World War Z," due out next summer starring Brad Pitt.
"That film was budgeted at $150 million," Olesker says. "I can tell you that the studios do not spend $150 million on a project unless they've done a heck of a lot of focus-group research to see if it's hot."
It's no secret that the undead are alive and well at the box office these days.
"The appeal is that it's the darkest of dark horror," Olesker says.
Whether zombies appeal to the city's politicos comes down to dollars, cents and a network buyer.
"I'm waiting to get a pickup for a national broadcasted show," Olesker says. "At that point, I would love to sit down with the mayor, talking with the city council members, and say we're bringing a tremendous opportunity by having 15 million to 20 million viewers across the country a week watching the show (filmed) exclusively in South Bend.
"My belief is that the upside for the city will be tremendous."
Staff writer Jeff Harrell: