5 Horror Movies That Deserve a Broadway Musical Adaptation

I’ve written a lot about horror musicals over the years on Icons of Fright, and it would appear that I’m not the only one out there with a deep and abiding love for musical adaptations of beloved horror films.  YOUNG FRANKENSTEIN, THE TEXAS CHAIN SAW MASSACRE, EVIL DEAD, CARRIE, AMERICAN PSYCHO, THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS, RE-ANIMATOR, and LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS are just a few horror films to get the musical theatre adaptation.  Something about the combination of campy nature of spontaneously bursting into song and blood spraying everywhere is something many of us can’t get enough of.  While I’m still waiting for Disney to get their shit together and make a Broadway version of HERCULES, I’ve made myself a little dream list of horror films I hope get the musical treatment.


Fred Dekker’s deliciously campy masterpiece is just BEGGING for people to spontaneously start singing. The success of musicals like LEGALLY BLONDE prove that we can easily do sorority houses justice on stage, and the technical directors would have a field day making, lighting, and choreographing slug puppets.  If you think there wouldn’t be a rousing tap number from J.C. Hooper with arm braces and all, you’re out of your damn mind.


The biggest selling point of EVIL DEAD: THE MUSICAL!  is the splatter zone in the front row. Fans come wearing white t-shirts and get soaked in stage blood allowing them a permanent piece of the show to take home.  DEAD ALIVE would allow the entire audience to be a splatter zone.  The audience would be covered in blood, and we’d be serenaded with the musical stylings of “Your Mother Ate My Dog.”


This one would be a bit more on the serious side and less of a fun-time campy show. Despite popular knowledge, there are a lot of incredibly deep and moving musicals that aren’t covered in jazz hands and kick lines.  PONTYPOOL as a musical would be very intimate, much like THRILL ME: THE LEOPOLD AND LOEB STORY.  With language being at the core of PONTYPOOL, it would be incredible to see the concept heightened using singing in addition to speaking.


It’s already been proven that Raimi’s material translates well from screen to stage, and DRAG ME TO HELL would be a lot of fun to do. The set and lighting design would be awesome for shadow play and moving objects, and the seance scene would be a blast to watch. While there are some aspects that would be a little difficult to be seen by a big audience (like the car fight), I think DRAG ME TO HELL would be a fun spectacle show.


While THEY LIVE is arguably not a horror film, it would make an absolutely killer musical. Rotating set pieces would allow audiences to see the world “transform” from what we normally see, to the OBEY style subliminal messaging with the special glasses. The infamous fight scene would give the best dance fight since WEST SIDE STORY, and “The Bubblegum Song” would quickly make Nada a dream role for actors everywhere.

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