After venturing into vampire mythology with 2014’s Only Lovers Left Alive, Jim Jarmusch has turned his eye to another genre standby: zombies. For his latest film, the upcoming The Dead Don’t Die, Jarmusch recruited a varied, stacked cast of actors, as well as musicians turned actors (in addition to being in a band himself, Jarmusch has worked frequently with Neil Young and recorded an album with the experimental lutist Jozef van Wissem), for a horror-comedy that, judging by its first trailer, features a lot of machetes, undead townies, and peak Adam Driver.
Billed as “the greatest zombie cast ever disassembled” (ha), The Dead Don’t Die stars Bill Murray (of Jarmusch’s Broken Flowers), Driver (Paterson), Tilda Swinton (Only Lovers Left Alive), Chloë Sevigny, Steve Buscemi, Luka Sabbat, Caleb Landry Jones, Danny Glover, Rosie Perez, and Carol Kaine, actors-wise, and Selena Gomez, Iggy Pop (about whom Jarmusch recently made a documentary), RZA, Sturgill Simpson (playing “Sturgill zombie,” per IMDb), and Tom Waits in the musician camp.
The trailer sets the scene for the zombie apocalypse: “In this peaceful town,” begins the narration, cutting through shots of a winding country road, a sign reading “Welcome to Centerville,” a graveyard, “in these quiet streets, something terrifying, something horrifying is coming.” That is, zombies—drawn to the rituals they enjoyed as humans, like a cup of coffee at the local diner—are coming. After a gruesome massacre at the aforementioned local diner, Driver and Murray, as small-town cops, are called to the scene, where Driver’s character intuitively proposes that “zombies, you know, the undead, ghouls,” may have been responsible. Turns out, he’s right on the mark.
Perhaps more significant than the actor/musician delineation, actually, is the mortal/undead distinction: According to the trailer, Driver, Glover, Murray, Sevigny, Swinton, and Gomez—at least to start—all play humans, while Carol Kaine and Iggy Pop play zombies. Meanwhile, Tilda Swinton, ostensibly a mortician, is also a Scottish-accented, samurai-sword-wielding zombie slayer. You’d probably want her on your team in the zombie apocalypse. See the full trailer, below.