Gleefully anarchic, the long-haired heavy-metal rocker-turned-slasher-film-director Rob Zombie sustains an instantly recognizable image on par with his musical contemporaries (and friends), Alice Cooper and Ozzy Osbourne. Long fascinated by Charles Manson, gore films, and the occult, Zombie exudes a dark sensibility that has earned him mainstream success as well as a certain cult following in the film world. Founder of the band White Zombie, the rocker made his name behind the camera not only by directing his group's music videos, but by designing the surreal "head trip" animated sequence in Mike Judge's Beavis and Butt-Head Do America (1996). His first feature outing came in 2003, with the controversial House of 1000 Corpses, a kind of Texas Chainsaw Massacre update, overloaded with buckets of gore, packed with references to '70s and '80s horror staples, and starring no less than Karen Black. Universal rejected the picture, certain of an NC-17 rating, but Zombie refused to make cuts and still emerged with an R. House drew critical pans but purportedly (and unsurprisingly) earned almost twice its small budget. His follow-up, 2005's The Devil's Rejects, did well critically (Roger Ebert commented, "The movie is not merely disgusting, but has an attitude and a subversive sense of humor.") He helmed a remake of John Carpenter's classic Halloween in 2007, and also directed a sequel to the project two years later. His return to grindhouse aesthetics came with 2012's The Lords of Salem.
Biography by Nathan Southern
- His childhood idol was Alice Cooper.
- Worked on Pee-wee's Playhouse as a production assistant.
- Formed White Zombie in 1985, overseeing every aspect of the band.
- Designed the hallucination sequence in the 1996 film Beavis and Butt-head Do America.
- Has written several comic-book series, including Spookshow International and The Nail.
- Is a vegetarian and supporter of PETA.