Some very upsetting news is coming out of the UK this morning, revealing that Robin Hardy, best known as the director of 1973's The Wicker Man, has passed away. This was originally reported by BBC, who received word from a friend of the family that Hardy had died on Friday.

Robin Hardy released a spiritual successor to The Wicker Man back in 2011 and he had been in development on a third "Wicker" film that he teased would focus on "the gods getting their comeuppance." The Wicker Man, which Christopher Lee previously said is one of his favorite movies he performed in, is a personal favorite of mine and its importance in horror history and influence on the genre cannot be understated. Just to name a few, it's easy to see the film's influence on Edgar Wright's Hot Fuzz, Ben Wheatley's Kill List, True Detective, and Radiohead's recent Burn The Witch video.

I had the pleasure of interviewing Robin Hardy on multiple occasions when Daily Dead was in its infancy, and was hugely appreciative that he was willing to talk with me in detail about his time on The Wicker Man. Unusual for interviews we usually take part in, Hardy was regularly asking me questions, and we got into talking religion, politics, and horror movies. My interviews with him always stand out as a highlight for me, and I'm really thankful for the time I had with him. My thoughts go out to Robin Hardy's friends and family.

For Daily Dead readers, I'd strongly suggest checking out the "final cut" of the movie that was released on Blu-ray in 2013. Due to the fact that The Wicker Man was originally screened as part of a double bill, the theatrical version was shorter than Hardy's original cut. Studio Canal was able to track down an uncut print of The Wicker Man a few years back and it's definitely worth your time. Robin Hardy may no longer be with us, but The Wicker Man has been inspiring filmmakers for decades and will continue to inspire a new generation of artists for years to come.

Source: BBC