2007’s I Am Legend, starring Will Smith, is often discussed as a zombie movie, but that’s not actually the case. The Francis Lawrence-helmed film was an adaptation of Richard Matheson’s 1954 post-apocalyptic novel of the same name. The book was one of the early apocalypse stories, and one of the novels responsible for normalizing the concept of global pandemics and infection-type stories in pop culture. The plot sees the sole survivor of a post-apocalyptic disease set out to find a cure.
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The film version faithfully adapts parts of the book, but I Am Legend’s ending is quite different to the novel, as are its Darkseekers, the creatures who are at the center of the story alongside Smith’s Robert Neville. The film enjoyed a successful commercial run and even gave viewers a superb, realistic performance from Will Smith, and its survival plot and horrifying monsters mean that the movie is often lumped into the zombie genre. That, however, is incorrect.