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Zombies! Woodbridge native takes a bite of the Amazon TV landscape

WOODBRIDGE — Will Gong, a native of Woodbridge, launched his first sitcom, “Bunkheads.”

The show takes a comedic approach to the zombie apocalypse, as a teacher, actress, workout warrior, and wannabe rapper learn to live together as they take refuge in a bunker to save their lives.

Gong said he was inspired to create the show after watching the success of TV’s “The Walking Dead.”

“It’s so serious,” he said. “How could you take a zombie apocalypse and make it a sitcom?”

Gong said he had a bunker idea from a script he’d been working on and combined these ideas to create the concept for “Bunkheads.”

“What if four people were trapped in a bunker and they had to learn to live together? That would be really funny,” Gong said.

Gong said he didn’t want to play up the zombie apocalypse aspect, which is terrifying.

“My view on human nature is, we adapt, we evolve, and eventually, we get used to things,” says Gong. “How long would it take you to get used to the zombie apocalypse? You resort back to being grumpy about the people you’re living with. You kind of forget that there’s this horrific event going on outside.”

Gong said he began working on the script for “Bunkheads” during the presidential campaign of 2016.

“We’re all living in a world with people we don’t necessarily see eye to eye with and we have to find some common ground. Those are the things I wanted to explore,” Gong says.

Gong grew up in Woodbridge and graduated from C.D. Hylton High School in 1998. Gong said he’s loved film since he was a child. He said his high school drama teacher inspired him to go into film.

“My drama teacher, Ms. Clark was working on creating her own show. One was a short play that she’d developed and written herself and we were all learning how to perform it. I remember watching her and thinking, ‘she just made this up.’ I thought that was amazing and I want to do this on some level. I want to make stuff,” Gong said.

Gong said this was the first time he was able to see the process laid out so when he went to college, he had two ideas. “I was going to write film and make stuff or I was going to be a journalist,” he said.

Gong said he thought journalism would lead him into film, but later decided to devote himself fulltime to film.

Gong said that while “Bunkheads” is the first sitcom he has created, it is not his first time working in comedy. He said some of his favorite work has been producing comedy.

“When you’re stuck working on something for a year or two when it’s fun, it makes it go down a bit smoother. Comedy is a fun place to be,” says Gong.

Gong said the initial six episodes of “Bunkheads” were released on December 13. He said his vision is to build a fan base and grow the show bigger.

“This has been one of the most satisfying events of my life. It’s mine, and it’s oddly incredibly personal,” says Gong.

Gong said he has goals to one day create his own feature film and work on or develop a network show.

He said, for now, he’d love to make more “Bunkheads.”

“I’d like to keep expanding it, stretching its legs and getting more people to watch. That would be the best thing,” he said.

Gong said he loves Woodbridge and comes home every chance he gets. He said he has a comic book store that he loves and frequents when he’s in town where he knows all the guys.

“Every time I get a better phone, I drive around and take better pictures of where I used to live. This is my place, my people. That’s home to me. No matter where I go and all the places I travel to, that’s what I consider home,” he said.

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On June 22, 2024, the Ira Dorsey Scholarship Ball, hosted by Alpha Phi Alpha Fraternity, Inc., Xi Alpha Lambda Chapter, seated in Prince William County, VA, awarded $73,000 in scholarships to 17 students through the chapter’s foundation, the Ira Dorsey Scholarship Endowment Fund. These scholarships will support their college journeys at prestigious universities such as Virginia Tech, Virginia State University, Purdue University, Howard University, Shenandoah University, Old Dominion University, Virginia Commonwealth University, University of Virginia, Cornell University, Spelman College, North Carolina A&T State University, and Norfolk State University. The event highlighted the commitment of the Ira Dorsey Scholarship Endowment Fund to fostering academic excellence and supporting the educational aspirations of young scholars in our community.

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