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People have always been intrigued by the idea of the world ending and most of the possibilities have been explored in film. Hollywood has been making films about the end of the world for decades, but recently an obsession with end-of-the-world films has formed. Many films and television series’ feature the world being overrun by zombies or other such interpretations of how the end of the world will come that it makes it seem like anything is possible.
One of the most well-known apocalyptic depictions is the 2003 film, 28 Days Later. Directed by Danny Boyle, this film first introduced us to zombies that could run fast and pose a huge threat to the human race. It was the beginning of a cinematic zombie-apocalypse phenomenon. In 2007, Will Smith played the last man on Earth in I Am Legend. This film showed us that even after the Earth’s population has been practically wiped clean, there is still hope that humans could survive. There have also been films in which the world is taken over by monkeys. Planet of the Apes, which first released in 1968 and again remade in 2001, shows humans destroyed by apes. In the film, 2012, John Cusack plays a man who is trying to keep his family alive after a solar flare causes catastrophic natural disasters. The Day After Tomorrow is another film portraying Mother Nature as a villain that destroys Earth.
This summer, the films World War Z and This is the End premiered, both depicting the end of the world in completely different ways. World War Z, starring Brad Pitt, is another featuring a zombie apocalypse ignited by a disease that spread fatally fast. This is the End, gives the end of the world a bit of comedic relief starring Seth Rogen and many other famous actors trying to survive an apocalypse.
The end of the world may be one topic that will never get old for Hollywood films because the creative possibilities are endless. Audiences will always be interested in new and different ways for the world to end—in film, that is.