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Now it's 'Wicker Man' the musical

LONDON, March 9 (UPI) -- The next incarnation of the Scottish horror movie "The Wicker Man" is a stage musical.

Workshop sessions begin Monday in London and the musical version is expected to have a Scottish preview before opening in London's West End, The Scotsman reported.

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One of the participants in the workshops is Leslie Mackie, a Scottish actress whose career began with a bit part as a schoolgirl in "The Wicker Man."

"Although it's a brilliant film, it is inherently theatrical," said Andrew Steggall, a young director who was not born when the movie was filmed in 1971. "The key ingredients are music, played by people who are in the story, and a sense of ritual. The Wicker Man would be a rich piece of theater."

"The Wicker Man" starred Christopher Lee as the laird of a Scottish island where pagan customs are practiced and Edward Woodward as a straight-laced police officer. The movie barely opened in Britain and not at all in the United States but went on to become a cult classic, spawning a Scottish festival and an unsuccessful U.S. remake with Nicholas Cage.

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