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28 Days Later Case Study

vikiwalden | Monday November 05, 2012

Categories: A Level, EDUQAS A Level, EDUQAS AS, FM2, Films & Case Studies, Hollywood Films, 28 Days Later, Genres & Case Studies, British Film, Horror


FM2: Close Study Topic

British Horror: 28 Days Later
Director: Danny Boyle
Writer: Alex Garland
Cast: Naomie Harris (Selena), Noah Huntley (Mark), Cillian Murphy (Jim), Bredan Gleeson (Frak), Megan Burns (Hannah), Christopher Eccleston (Major Henry West)
Production Company: DNA Films and UK Film Council
Distributors: 20th Century Fox and Fox Searchlight Pictures
Release: 2002

Production Context

With finance from both America’s Fox Searchlight and the UK Film Council the film had a promising beginning. The genre conventions and the success of Boyle’s last film Trainspotting (1996) – which made £11,000,384 at the UK box office alone) would have helped success the international funding. While its unique twist on the genre and inclusion of both UK locations and stars would have interested the UK Film Council. The film would have easily passed their British cultural test defining it as a British film.


The support of the News Corporation distributors (Fox and Fox Searchlight) helped the film get a global release. The budget was approximately £5 million. In the UK it took £6.1 million and was a surprise hit in the US taking over $45 million, despite a limited release in fewer than 1,500 screens. The worldwide box office equated $82.7 million and was a hit with critics.



The film opens with CCTV footage of street riots representing a society that has descended into chaos. As the camera tracks out the audience see that an ape is the spectator of this human violence, which he watches on multiple screens.

A group of activists break into the Primate centre, set on setting the apes free. A scientist warns them that they have been injected with rage and are highly contagious. They ignore his warnings and release one and the female activist is infected.

28 days later… a young man, Jim, awakes in hospital to find not only the building, but the entirety of London desolate. He finds a newspaper (which speaks of...

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