Zombieland: Double Tap director Ruben Fleischer reveals star Emma Stone, who returns as the shotgun-toting Wichita in the ten-years-later zombie comedy sequel, pitched a gag that would have seen her band of apocalypse survivors — Tallahassee (Woody Harrelson), Columbus (Jesse Eisenberg) and Little Rock (Abigail Breslin) — encounter cast members from The Walking Dead. The “funny, funny idea” was never proposed to any TWD stars and just “never became real,” but Fleischer included a nod to the franchise with a nod to creator Robert Kirkman’s long-running comic book launched in 2003.
“I think it was good to acknowledge the reality of The Walking Dead. Emma had a funny idea that as our heroes are kind of making their way through the post-apocalyptic landscape, they come across, just in passing, some members of the cast of The Walking Dead,” Fleischer told Uproxx. “But we never were able to make that happen.”
Fleischer doesn’t name the stars eyed for the “crossover,” but the gag never made it past the conceptual stage.
“It just never even became real. I just thought it was a funny, funny idea,” he said. “But I think the comic book nod is probably a better acknowledgement. Might start to get a little Scooby-Doo, like the Harlem Globetrotters showing up.”
Former TWD star Tom Payne, who played Jesus until midway through the zombie drama’s ninth season, had the same idea when he expressed his hopes for a cameo last October.
“They’re doing Zombieland 2 right now, and I was like, ‘Oh!’” Payne told Producers Vs Show during last year’s New York Comic Con. “You know, it would be kind of funny if I could have a couple of scenes in that and play a zombie walker or whatever. Because it’d just be an interesting kind of crossover thing. Maybe. I’d love to turn up in a little Easter egg in something.”
In the Zombieland sequel, Columbus writes off a Walking Dead comic as being “terrifying but totally unrealistic.”
Also starring Rosario Dawson, Luke Wilson, Thomas Middleditch and Zoey Deutch, Zombieland: Double Tap opens Oct. 18.
A decade after Zombieland became a hit film and a cult classic, the lead cast (Woody Harrelson, Jesse Eisenberg, Abigail Breslin, and Emma Stone) have reunited with director Ruben Fleischer (Venom) and the original writers Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick (Deadpool) for Zombieland: Double Tap. In the sequel, written by Rhett Reese & Paul Wernick and Dave Callaham, through comic mayhem that stretches from the White House and through the heartland, these four slayers must face off against the many new kinds of zombies that have evolved since the first movie, as well as some new human survivors. But most of all, they have to face the growing pains of their own snarky, makeshift family.
New episodes of The Walking Dead Season 10 premiere Sundays at 9/8c on AMC. For more TWD intel, follow the author @CameronBonomolo on Twitter.