Home Movie The Wicker Man, Britt Ekland, and Constructing a Pagan Icon of Horror

The Wicker Man, Britt Ekland, and Constructing a Pagan Icon of Horror

The Wicker Man, Britt Ekland, and Constructing a Pagan Icon of Horror


Enter Britt Ekland

Though Lee, Woodward, Hardy, and Shaffer are all now not with us, co-star Britt Ekland is. The Swedish actress, now 80, was the visitor of honor final month at a screening of the newly restored movie in London the place she was joined by Robin Hardy’s household and Wicker Man fan Guillermo del Toro. Following that occasion, Ekland sat down with Den of Geek to reminisce—in addition to reveal that solely lately had she turn into conscious of the frequently rising stature of The Wicker Man amongst cinephiles.

“I lived in London most of my life, on and off, and Time Out had two of my movies, Get Carter and The Wicker Man, as two of the 100 greatest movies ever made in Britain,” the actress explains. “[But] it’s throughout the final seven, eight, 9 years that I spotted it’s a really ‘culty’ and vital movie, and different movies are attempting to realize what it did, however they by no means have.”

Within the movie, Ekland performs islander Willow MacGregor, the sexually liberated daughter of the innkeeper on the island’s Inexperienced Man Inn, whose job it’s to tempt and seduce the devoutly Christian (and decidedly virginal) Sergeant Howie. “I didn’t know something about paganism,” Ekland tells us.

“I’m Swedish. You realize, we have now Midsommar and Valborg, which is while you gather sticks and issues from the yr and also you burn and have fun the [end of] winter and [arrival of] spring,” she continues. “However I knew nothing about paganism. I simply knew it was a movie about an island in the course of the ocean the place, each time it’s chilly all over the place else, every little thing is blooming and exquisite… I used to be principally nervous about the truth that I’d need to be semi-naked.”

The Unforgiving Shoot of The Wicker Man

Ekland was proper to be involved. Whereas the movie is ready within the spring, and the island is meant to be lush and colourful, new possession on the firm behind it, British Lion Movies, wanted to get a film into manufacturing shortly. So filming started within the fall of 1972 round numerous villages and coastal areas in Scotland, which meant that the climate was something however heat and sunny (synthetic leaves and blossoms have been reportedly glued to the bushes to make issues look extra spring-like).

“A lot of the places have been on the moors, and we have been simply strolling for a lot of, many various functions,” Ekland recollects. “We walked to look at the wicker man burn, for one. However there was infinite strolling and dancing round that space. Strolling to the cave, strolling for the dance with the swords—a variety of strolling. For me, the movie was all about strolling within the chilly in flowing, nondescript robes.”



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