Stage theatre is alive and undead, and a refreshing change from television and movies. As is evidenced by hugely successful stage plays like The Evil Dead Live and Night of the Living Dead Live, professional adaptations can really work, if done right. The Evil Dead Live Musical, which was started in Toronto by a small but talented group is now being performed around the world, like Tokyo Japan, Seoul South Korea, Madrid Spain, and all over the United States. So it was almost inevitable that the much beloved zom-rom-com Shaun of the Dead get the same treatment.
Last year a group of artists calling themselves Almost Legal Productions started a Kickstarter campaign to raise funds to develop a stage version of Shaun of the Dead, and were successful. So back in October, the hit movie was resurrected in a musical that featured cricket bats and records, augmented with singing and dancing numbers. The production is admittedly amateurish, but that has not stopped it from being brought back for another run. It might be the sheer cheesiness of the show that may be contributing to its success, as the UK has quite a history of these kinds of over the top musicals. But from the looks of the trailer below, it should not be compared to The Evil Dead Musical shows, which have much higher production values. “Does the show look kind of terrible?” Almost Legal Productions write on their website. “Of course. Does it also look like s sh*t ton of fun? Yes it does.”
Aside from the fact everyone knows the film so well (making it easy for the audience to get involved), a huge driving factor behind the show might also be the fact that Edgar Wright and Simon Pegg have given their blessing to use their film.
Director Chas Burns [of Shaun of the Dead Live] says he got permission for the new show simply by asking Simon Pegg’s assistant. She contacted Working Title and Universal Pictures to gain the rights on the company’s behalf – and eventually they said yes.
Simon Pegg tweeted:
Good luck or I should say, lose a leg, to Almost Legal’s production of Shaun of the Dead Live tonight in Stroud.
If you want to check it out for yourself, then check out their website. Shows are selling out fast!