The wicker man began life in 1971 when three vague acquaintances. Version summaries with dates from the movie the wicker. Dvd looks great and comes with an interesting makingof featurette, it still doesnt provide the elusive fulllength version running 102 minutes. The story of the wicker mans production is quite infamous. It is in a field to the west of the m5 motorway, near bridgwater in somerset, south west england, near to the bristol to exeter railway line and south of junction 23 of the motorway. There were three different edits of the wicker man floating around the home video market in the 1980s, but 102minute version, the longest, was by far the most coveted, mostly because it was the only one where everything set up in the films prologue is tied up neatly in its conclusion, giving the wicker man a quirky kind of symmetry. It has the standard 88 or 87 minute theatrical version. The wicker man was a labor of love for director robin hardy, screenwriter anthony shaffer, and producer and costar christopher lee. It contains all the really important scenes, sequences to make the story work, i think.
This is the edited 88 minute version originally released in u. This treatment must have been heartbreaking for the creative team. The screenplay by anthony shaffer, inspired by david pinners 1967 novel ritual, centres on the visit of police sergeant neil howie to the isolated island of summerisle, in search of a missing girl. All that really exists of the wicker man is the american home video version which was taken from one of the 102 minute prints before they disappeared. Watch the wicker man the final cut 1973 prime video. The destroyed footage has left an air of mystery around the wicker manto this very day.
The movie has been restored to its original 102 minute run time after being hacked by british distributors to 88 min so they could cram it onto double bills. Later a complete directors cut was discovered and rereleased. The negatives and source materials disappeared from shepperton studios sometime later and are rumored to have ended up in a land fill. There is no 102 minute cut of the film in existence anywhere in the world, and there probably never has been. The wicker man may not be the citizen kane of horror, but this interview truly redefines terror. There are two versions of the wicker man that i know of.
Featuring brand new extras, this 40th anniversary edition is every the wicker man fans perfect ending to a much mythicised search for the most complete version of the film. Unlike the 95 minute version it does have footage prior to sgt. The original the wicker man on netflix stream on demand. Later, that version disappeared and the original 102 minute surfaced on home video.
On the one hand, its the only available, reasonably complete version of the wicker man, and for that, its well worth having. The wicker man the various versions of the wicker man. A slightly longer 99 minute version supposedly exists on an archived video tape. The director robin hardy, who has died aged 86, made only one film of note. The film primarily is a remake of the 1973 british film the wicker man, but also draws from its source material, david pinners 1967 novel ritual. See these excellent comparisons of the theatrical vs the final cut and the theatrical vs the directors cut. The wicker man is a 2006 horror film written and directed by neil labute and starring nicolas cage. There is no 102 minute cut of the film in existence anywhere in the. Thus, an 87minute version of the film was cut and released. Deeley now saw the chance to offload the wicker man in its short version form as a bpicture.
In spring 1973, a 102 minute version of the wicker man was complete, but british lion was bought out again by stockholder michael deeley who, with businessman. Georgia fleury reynolds from heyuguys interviews legendary director robin hardy on his movie the wicker man. The main evidence for this practice is one sentence in julius caesars commentary on the gallic war, which modern scholarship has linked to an earlier writer, poseidonius. The wicker man 1973 theatrical cut or directors cut. Wicker man trivia based on the page but added to in this section we present some curious bits, bobs, odds and sods relating to the wicker man. A horror film more in intention and theme than in execution, the wicker man is a. The wicker man was almost lost to history vrv blog. Copies of it were thought to be lost until one was put up for sale last. By adam ruhlscreen daily is reporting that after a worldwide search an uncut print of the 102 minute version of the original the wicker man has been located. Largely ignored in the final rush of hammer horror films pouring out of england, the wicker man either confounded or impressed most first time viewers but became lost in a tangle of bad distribution, careless editing, and public indifference. Christopher lee telephoned all the film critics that he knew. As time passed, the 88minute bastardization became the. The wicker man special edition directors cut 2 disc set. This dvd is of the original, shortened 88 minute version first released to theatres.
Lionsgate presents the latter, which it calls the final cut, on bluray. Corman felt the film overlong, and it is believed that many of the cuts made for. For a long time, this was the only version that was available on video until anchor bay about a decade ago released a 2 disc dvd special edition that contained both the heavily truncated 88 minute theatrical release as well as an almost 100 minute version that to date is the closest any release has come to the heavily sought after 102 minute. Im certainly pleased to discover how well researched the film is in terms. Nature and organisation wicker man song lyrics genius. As with any anecdotes relating to matters that happened 35 years ago, it is perhaps hard to decipher which are entirely factual and. This also has the events in chronological order unlike the 88 min version. After that, the extended version disc ii is just incredibly problematic. Version summaries with movie dates for the directors cut, theatrical, shaffer script and novelization. Cut version i just finished watching the wicker man 1973 and am completely in love this is right in line with the kind of sleepersuspense horror im really into such as silent night deadily night, the stepford wives and rosemarys baby 70s suspense horror is what i live for please post any more titles.
So finally, in december 1973, the wicker man stumbled into release. These days the wicker man is best known for its ridiculous 2006 remake, the. A wicker man was a large wicker statue reportedly used by the ancient druids priests of celtic paganism for sacrifice by burning it in effigy. Its reputation began to grow over the years until the film was finally regarded by many cultists as a classic, particularly after the full 102 minute cut. The wicker man is a powerful, disturbing film and is one of the greatest films of the modern era. Somehow, the alterations in the final cut have been choses wisely plus its. The movie was trundled into theaters in truncated form as a bgrade horror flick, cutting the 102 minute original version to 87 minutes for most theatrical screenings. A dual dvd set in a burnt wooden box was released in 2001 by anchor bay. To herald this landmark achievement, for a film originally cursed by its production company to languish in obscurity, a restored final cut has recently enjoyed a lap of honour on cinema screens nationwide.
The dvd presents the film, fully restored from original vault materials, in its original 102 minute version. The video of the fulllength version ceased to be sold in the early 1990s and it disappeared from the shelves. The wicker man is a unique film that has built a considerable reputation over the years. The 1973 classic horror film had almost twenty minutes of footage removed prior to its release. Im able to see the 102 minute version of the film because im curious about what was cut for the theatrical release. Wicker man by robin hardy edward woodward, britt ekland. Cover of willows song by american composer paul giovanni. Wicker man by robin hardy edward woodward, britt ekland, diane. But as this was the wicker man 1973, which terrified audiences without showing so much as. Anchor bay released the 88 minute cut on dvd with the documentary featurette the wicker man enigma and the rare 102 minute cut in a 2disc special edition with the 88 minute release version. Unfortunately, the seduction dance is equal to the theatrical version while it was approx. No, this is not the original cut of 102 minutes, which hardy completed in 1973 but never saw released, nor is it the 117 minute version, which some have. The wicker man was cut drastically on its initial release in 1973, and only the chance discovery of a print in the us has enabled this 94minute. The wicker man is a 1973 british horror film directed by robin hardy and starring edward woodward, britt ekland, diane cilento, ingrid pitt, and christopher lee.
The wicker man is a seminal 1973 british folk horrorthrillermusical film, directed by robin hardy, with a screenplay by anthony shaffer inspired by the 1967 novel ritual by david pinner, but not officially an adaptation sergeant howie edward woodward, a devoutly christian detective, travels to the remote scottish island of summerisle, home of a famous variety of apples, to investigate. Christopher lee, who saw a screening of the film before it was sent for cuts, maintained that there was a full ten minutes missing even from the reconstruction. The 102 minute version was certainly released on tape. Musician ian cutler recalls scoring a dream sequence for which no. Endure the misery of this movie again, or for the first time, with friends and family in. Although hardy now thinks that the first unfinished version of the film he. This contains scenes before the arrival on the island with edward woodward preaching in church and receiving the photo and some later scenes of christopher lee reciting a poem. Anchor bay has also released a 99 minute limited edition that still isn.
The 102 minute print was available as a video release, but it was deleted in 1991 and the present whereabouts of the master copy are unknown. Magnum contained the restored 102 minute cut, which contains a more linear. Its portrayal of the pagan religion is very impressive. This actually took place and some were recut as well. The result was an 88minuteversion for its theatrical release in. It was featured in the 1973 film the wicker man and is commonly referred to as the wicker man song. With the original 102 minute directors cut mysteriously lost forever, a shortened 88 minute theatrical cut was released in the uk in 1973, a version hardy maintains does not make narrative sense due to key scenes being omitted. The wicker man 1973 directed by robin hardy genres. The fate of the original prints and negative trims has entered into the unfortunate folklore of lost movie footage.
The wicker man is a cult classic of leftfield british horror whose reputation. Approved by director robin hardy, the final cut is the finest and most complete version of the wicker man. Howies arrival on summerisle, including him as a preacher. The wicker man best scenes long, excruciating version. The wicker man is almost like psycho in the sense that it plays with the audiences minds as well as the central character of the film. Most movie guides list the running time as 102 minutes, which is the directors cut. It contains some afterthoughts which i think most directors have about films they make its the film as we originally intended it. Four decades after its 1973 cinema release, the unique british cult classic the wicker man still holds an enduring fascination for audiences all over the world. There were three different edits of the wicker man floating around the home video market in the 1980s, but 102 minute version, the longest, was by far the most coveted, mostly because it was the only one where everything set up in the films prologue is tied up neatly in its conclusion, giving the wicker man a quirky kind of symmetry. Abraxas, who rereleased a partially restored version of the film with material taken from a nearmint copy of the 102 minute version which had been sent to roger corman when he had expressed interest in the picture.
Unfortunately, the 102 minute version of the wicker man could only be reconstructed, years later, with inferior video elements that roger corman still had in his possession. In all of this, a 102 minute version was brutally chopped down to 88 minutes with a significantly reordered first act, and i would call this the movie that was seen for years thereafter, except that in reality, the wicker man spent a comfortable length of time seeming to be the next best thing to a lost movie. I havent seen that version, but at least one source, karl and phillip frenchs book cult movies, says the shorter version on this dvd plays better. Hacked down to 87 minutes for its initial release, the film was a theatrical. The wicker man 1973 page 2 classic horror film board. Breaking news full version of original the wicker man. It stands 40 feet 12 m, with a 16foot 5 m arm span, and is made of black maul willow withies woven over a 3tonne steel frame.378 1577 320 311 193 659 934 85 1370 509 520 139 660 521 145 670 338 611 1598 282 87 524 802 453 604 60 112 895 682 985 117 569 1099 967 412 517 192 162 878 490 1299 63 1261