Vaccination Center Screens 'World War Z' to People As They Wait for Jab

A vaccination center's decision to host a screening of the Brad Pitt zombie movie World War Z for anyone waiting to receive their jab has caused a stir on social media.

A Twitter user posting under the handle @hotgirlzizek shared a photo taken by a friend waiting to receive her jab at the Bataan People's Center in Balanga, on the Philippine island of Luzon.

The image shows a large warehouse with masked members of the public sitting in plastic chairs carefully spaced out from one another.

Visible in the background stands a giant screen showing those in attendance the zombie film World War Z.

The striking image has been retweeted more than 44,000 times, garnering over 195,000 likes and 500 comments in the process.

The individual posting the image initially claimed it was taken in Cavite, however multiple users commented on the post to correct this mistake, including one who shared a picture of the vaccination center in Bataan, where another film featuring British actor Rowan Atkinson can be seen playing the background.

This is not in Cavite, this is at the Bataan People's Center here in our city of Balanga in Bataan pic.twitter.com/5KsKtmEzEP

— BARAKODADKEL (@barakodadkel) August 29, 2021

According to the Facebook page for the Bataan People's Center, the venue is being used to distribute vaccinations to the public. Newsweek has contacted the center for comment.

Several Twitter users have tweeted messages claiming to have watched the film while receiving their jab.

A user posting under the handle @kayeayem_ said she saw World War Z along with another zombie film while she waited to be vaccinated.

Bataan to eh! Netflix while waiting in line to get vaccinated!
Natapos ko nga ang world war z that day! Sinundan ng isa pang zombie movie! 😂😂 https://t.co/JQLq1LWapQ

— Kim_HeeAe (@kayeayem_) August 28, 2021

Those claims were backed up by another comment from @Exo_Lnoona, who said she watched the Brad Pitt film followed by the Korean zombie movie #Alive.

Sa Bataan yan😂I got vaccinated there. They played 2 movies. A korean zombie movie, Alive and Workd War Z.

— Oh Vivi🏴Fila🎮 (@Exo_Lnoona) August 29, 2021

One user posting under the handle @ScarlettSyidek said she was "so shocked" by the movie, she almost missed a nurse calling her up to have her injection.

Syok sangat tengok sampai nama/nombor panggil pun tak sedar hahaha nurse panggil pakai mic kangg 😂😂 Macam dekat klinik mata HTJ Seremban, diorang tayang movie dekat waiting area sampai doktor tekan nombor sorang pun tak perasan. Last2 nurse tak tayang movie, tayang RTM je 😂😂

— Eurus Holmes (@ScarlettSyidek) August 29, 2021

Based on Max Brooks' critically lauded novel of the same name, World War Z divided critics upon release in June 2013, but later became an overwhelming success at the box office.

Fast forward eight years and the film is continuing to divide people, albeit for altogether different reasons.

The original poster @hotgirlzizek described the choice of film as "questionable" while @bacontan2 said their "blood pressure would go up" if they were made to watch it before getting vaccinated.

Another, @docemdy, recalled a similar experience. "I remember being on a ferry ride from Cebu to Bohol and they showed us a disaster movie involving another mode of transportation," they wrote.

Others, however, felt the choice of film was entirely appropriate.

"This is a perfect movie," @LianardDourum commented. "A disease that turns people to zombie. If you don't wanna be Zombie. Get your vaccine!"

The original poster quipped: "Imagine if the next one they show is Contagion" in reference to the Steven Soderbergh movie starring Matt Damon, which had been widely praised for offering the most authentic depiction of a real-life pandemic.

However, World War Z and other zombie films of its ilk are unlikely to be screened around vaccination centers in the U.S. anytime soon, especially as one such movie has already been cited as a reason not to get the shot.

Akiva Goldsman, the co-writer of the 2007 post-apocalyptic Will Smith movie I Am Legend, recently issued a terse statement stressing that the film was a work of fiction.

It came after reading an extract from a New York Times article that talked about a woman who was hesitant to take up the jab over fears she may become a zombie like the ones that feature in the film. It later emerged that I Am Legend features prominently in several anti-vaccination memes posted on social media.

Newsweek has reached out to @hotgirlzizek for further comment.

World War Z
Brad Pitt in zombie apocalypse movie "World War Z." The film was shown to people waiting to be vaccinated in the Philippines. Paramount