Night of the Living Dead is a 1968 American independent zombie film directed by George A. Romero, starring Duane Jones, Judith O'Dea and Karl Hardman. It premiered on October 1, 1968, and was completed on a US$114,000 budget. The film became a financial success, grossing $12 million domestically and $18 million internationally. It has been a cult classic ever since. Night of the Living Dead was heavily criticized at its release for its explicit gore, but eventually garnered critical acclaim and has been selected by the Library of Congress for preservation in the National Film Registry as a film deemed “culturally, historically or aesthetically significant.” The story follows characters Ben (Duane Jones), Barbra (Judith O'Dea), and five others trapped in a rural farmhouse in Pennsylvania which is attacked by unnamed “living dead” monsters, drawing on earlier depictions in popular culture of zombies. Night of the Living Dead was the basis of five subsequent Living Dead films (1978–2010) also directed by Romero, and has inspired remakes.