Director Zack Snyder attends the Batman V Superman: Dawn of Justice New York Premiere at Radio City Music Hall on March 20, 2016.
Photo: Jamie McCarthy (Getty Images)

What happens when a group of mercenaries attempts to invade a zombie quarantine zone and rob a casino? We don’t know, but Zack Snyder is about to show us.

The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that Zack Snyder will follow up Justice League by directing Army of the Dead, which will be financed and distributed through Netflix. Joby Harold, who wrote Guy Ritchie’s King Arthur movie, wrote the script, which had first been set up at Warner Bros. over a decade ago.

As described above, the film is set in Las Vegas during a zombie outbreak, where a group of people sneak into a quarantine zone to rob a casino. “There are no handcuffs on me at all with this one,” Snyder told the Hollywood Reporter. “I thought this was a good palate cleanser to really dig in with both hands and make something fun and epic and crazy and bonkers in the best possible way.”

But just how “epic and crazy?” The above link is an interview with director Matthijs van Heijninger Jr., who was originally going to direct with Snyder producing back in 2008. A few years later, io9 spoke with him and got some more details on why the film was taking so long. Here’s one fairly disturbing quote:

There’s an extra dimension to this zombie film, because they…. they…. I’m still wondering if I should tell this…. the male zombies rape human females. Yes. And they have human hybrid zombie offsprings. It’s a new take on the zombie genre, which is crazy.

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Now, that was 2011. Movies change just as much as the social climate. You’d have to think that detail has been changed by now but, it was worth mentioning. We’ve contacted Netflix for comment and will update if we hear back. [Update: Sources tell us zombie rape is no longer part of the current version story.]

When last we left Snyder, he had exited the director’s chair on Justice League due to the tragic suicide of his daughter. Joss Whedon then came in to complete the film, which ended up not living up to Warner Bros.’ high standards. Since then, the DC universe has been in a bit of flux storywise, though its most recent film, Aquaman, has become its highest grossing superhero movie of all time.

For Snyder though, it sounds like he’s ready to move on and get back to his roots, which is huge action, like in 300, and zombies, like in the remake of Dawn of the Dead. “[Army of the Dead] will be the most kick-ass, self-aware—but not in a wink-to-the-camera way—balls-to-the-wall zombie freakshow that anyone has ever seen. No one’s ever let me completely loose [like this],” he said.

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Sounds like this time, the Snyder Cut will be the one that hits Netflix.

Snyder and his team will shoot the film this summer with a budget that could be upwards of $90 million, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Head there for more details.

Update: An old Shock Till You Drop piece details more of the plot back in 2007/2008. Here’s producer Deborah Snyder

Basically, something happened in Vegas and there was this huge outbreak of these zombies that were killing people. So to contain it they basically contain Vegas. The city is this wasteland with walls around it and all of these zombies are inside. One of our characters goes in there to investigate and gets trapped inside and her father goes in to search for her. He can’t do it alone so he gets a group of mercenaries under the guise that there’s money still in the casinos, because they don’t care about his daughter. There’s also a plotline of what’s really going on - like, the containment isn’t so contained and there are cover-ups. We think it’s really fun. ‘Dawn’ was set in a mall and come on, Vegas is the perfect place to set a zombie film and you can have a lot of fun with that!”

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Update #2 January 30 1:15 pm: This story has been updated with additional context on the current film story.


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