ShockTillYouDrop have been informed that Robin Hardy‘s long awaited Cowboys For Christ is finally in production. Some shooting has already taken place in the US and the filmmakers are reportedly in the midst of the Scottish shoot right now.
Hardy’s 1973 directorial debut The Wicker Man is truly one of the most jubilantly beloved films in the pantheon of British genre pictures. I still see it doing abundant business as late night screenings, and pretty much everybody I speak to holds it close and dear, including those of us all too aware of its shortcomings. For a good few years now, Hardy has been touting Cowboys as a kind of follow up, a ‘spiritual successor’ to feature a number of the same ingredients as Wicker Man: a clash between pagans and Christians, a remote rural location, Christopher Lee as a mysterious aristocrat.
IMDB are listing the remainder of the cast as Ed Speleers, Susie Amy, Henry Garrett, Keith Warwick and Morgan James. Meanwhile, over at the similarly dodgy research resource of Wikipedia, the film is described as “shelved”. Look to see that change in the coming days – or, heck, get on over there and fix it yourself, if you want.
The story was published in novel form, and therefore the major plot details would seem to be very much out in the open. Two Texan Christians, Beth and Steve, come to the Scottish community of Tressock while on a mission to spread Christianity. There they are hosted as guests of Sir Lachlan and Delia Morrison, with Lachlan to be played by Christopher Lee and, when Hardy last tried to mount the film, at least, Delia being played by Joan Collins.
The film heads to a conclusion that – SPOILER ALERT – offers a double version of the Wicker Man pay off, with both Beth and Steve being drawn into blood rituals. The film was once to be called The Riding of the Laddie, which ties into Steve’s role as a ‘Laddie’ in one of the pagan ceremonies. Creepy stuff.
Creepy, but borderline-cliche stuff.