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Little Shop Of Horrors Alternate Ending
November 10, 2008 2:49 PM   Subscribe

The Little Shop of Horrors movie was originally intended to be.... very different. Three-part YouTube link. Amazing.
posted by macrowave (38 comments total) 19 users marked this as a favorite

 
Ouch, those were some pretty sad and disappointed special effects designers. That team was headed by Bran Ferren.
posted by StickyCarpet at 3:10 PM on November 10, 2008


Holy crap. This clip has been the holy grail for a certain subset of movie nerds for years. As I understand it, the first DVD of the movie had the alternate ending, but was pulled off the shelves immediately due to a contractual dispute.
posted by roll truck roll at 3:14 PM on November 10, 2008


Hold up, the stage version always had the gruesome ending. I played Audrey in our college production and my favourite bit was getting eaten!
posted by freya_lamb at 3:17 PM on November 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


Afterwards, director Oz commented: "In a stage play, you kill the leads and they come out for a bow — in a movie, they don't come out for a bow, they're dead. And the audience loved those people, and they hated us for it."
posted by roll truck roll at 3:21 PM on November 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


I should probably watch this movie before I read this thread.
posted by mecran01 at 3:31 PM on November 10, 2008


Ah, good point rock truck roll. Dang those sentimental film-goers, the original ending rocks!
posted by freya_lamb at 3:40 PM on November 10, 2008


Um, you should probably watch this movie before you do anything else. Seriously. I didn't even know they let people who haven't seen Little Shop of Horrors on the internet.
posted by heathkit at 3:41 PM on November 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


L'il Bookhouse's Guide to Making Your Own Action-Figure-Chomping Audrey II if You are a Child in the 80s:

Take (1) WWF Wrestling Ring playset. Cut the ropes at the turnbuckeles to form tentacles.

Poke hole in center of the ring.

Thread the cord of (1) Authentic Sports Illustrated Football Phone through the hole in the center of the ring. The split-open football creates Audrey's head, just the right size for chomping the G.I. Joes who will no doubt try to attack it.
posted by Bookhouse at 3:42 PM on November 10, 2008 [5 favorites]


Oh! Oh! Oh! Fab! Will send to all my theatrical friends right now! Thanks macrowave!
posted by alasdair at 3:46 PM on November 10, 2008


My name is Seymour Krelborne, and I approve this message.

Little Shop is pretty much ideal as a high school musical, not least because a little effort can get you special effects that look about as good as the original on a $100 budget. I recommend chicken wire covered in Mono Foam for the head of the full sized Audrey II. Dress a puppeteer in red and put her inside to operate it, but warn her that it's going to get pretty hot inside and that she will be in there for half the play. Forget watering the plant -- make sure you hydrate the puppeteer.
posted by justsomebodythatyouusedtoknow at 4:12 PM on November 10, 2008 [2 favorites]


this link is substantially, and substantively, better than your FPP link. that said, good FPP.
posted by yonation at 4:15 PM on November 10, 2008 [2 favorites]



Seems the voice of the plant very recently passed away too.. ?
posted by lundman at 4:45 PM on November 10, 2008


Man, screw test audiences. Has altering a film to their lowest-common-denominator whims ever produced anything good? This ending is awesome. Sure, the main characters get eaten, but then we see 7 or 8 minutes of full-grown Audrey IIs destroying cities Godzilla-style to cheesy 80s pop-rock. The last shot in the film is an Audrey II atop the Statue of Liberty's crown. AWESOME.
posted by DecemberBoy at 5:09 PM on November 10, 2008 [1 favorite]


I saw this movie but don't remember being particularly impressed (as a child) except for the Dentist song with Steve Martin.
posted by DU at 5:13 PM on November 10, 2008


Every dentist and dental assistant I've ever talked to loves the Dentist song. I'm not sure about Steve Martin, but they love the song.
posted by CheeseDigestsAll at 5:49 PM on November 10, 2008


Wow, the original ending is B-movie in all the best ways.
posted by thomas j wise at 6:37 PM on November 10, 2008


FEED ME.
posted by ersatz at 6:49 PM on November 10, 2008


This was so hard to find when I was a big movie nerd*. My heart is filled with joy

Some background. Growing up, we had a soild old workhorse of a TV that got maybe 2 clear channels on a good day if you stood in the corner holding tinfol with your arms over your head. Denied delicious broadcast TV, we had to make do on the VHS cassettes our Grandmother would bring over when she babysat. She'd come over, plop me and my brother down, and get back to her knitting. She always brought the same 4 movies. One of them was Little Shop Of Horrors. (Okay, she was an odd Grandmother.) I figured if she babysat us twice a week for a year, for say, 6 years, then I say I saw Little Shop Of Horrors over a hundred and fifty times.

It doesn't even matter if it's a good movie **, it's so imprinted on my mind that I can probably quote the entire film from front to back. Once, on a blind date, I joked that I lived "Downtown, where folks are broke." and he responded with "Where life's a joke." and we did the entire song as calm conversation in the diner. Sadly, I did not Gay Marry him instantly, but I digress. Having the actual, real live orginal ending is like a little expansion pack for my childhood.

"Don't Feed The Plants" is, IMHO, the weakest song in the play, but it does have that great chorus. "BUM BUM BUM BA BUM BAH!"

*As opposed to being a collasal movie nerd.
posted by The Whelk at 7:20 PM on November 10, 2008 [3 favorites]


** It is.
posted by The Whelk at 7:30 PM on November 10, 2008


More wonderfully twisted to have the guy who's been hacking up bodies and plotting murder for half the story go on to live happily ever-B after with his sweetie.
posted by zennie at 7:42 PM on November 10, 2008


The Little Shop of Horrors movie came out, and ended, exactly as iwas intended. Very dark ending indeed.

Sad how people aren't aware of this little gem.
posted by ethnomethodologist at 8:07 PM on November 10, 2008


was not iwas
posted by ethnomethodologist at 8:07 PM on November 10, 2008


Every dentist and dental assistant I've ever talked to loves the Dentist song.

When dentists started giving their patients headphones to listen to while they worked, I always suspected that my dentist at the time might slip the Dentist song into the walkman. He was just that kind of guy. If I were a dentist I certainly would have.
posted by dlugoczaj at 8:39 PM on November 10, 2008


The B&W graininess and odd choice of upbeat local car commercial style music makes this footage kinda disturbing.
posted by Senor Cardgage at 9:32 PM on November 10, 2008


and we did the entire song as calm conversation in the diner. Sadly, I did not Gay Marry him instantly, but I digress.

I would gay marry you instantly, just for the awesomeness of that story.
posted by dirtynumbangelboy at 2:28 AM on November 11, 2008 [1 favorite]


God, I remember this ending from the book when we did it at school. However, probably like most Catholic school musicals, the lyrics were edited to take out 'whores' from Skid Row, and we rehearsed 'Mean Green Mother From Outer Space' twice before a teacher realised what a 'mother' was. There were also two extra doo-wop girls and a scene where one of the more confident Year 10 kids took some Year 7s on 'a school trip to see the plant'.

We never did Grease for obvious reasons.

This looks amazing in black and white. I kind of wish now the musical film had been shot that way.
posted by mippy at 5:35 AM on November 11, 2008


"In a stage play, you kill the leads and they come out for a bow — in a movie, they don't come out for a bow, they're dead. And the audience loved those people, and they hated us for it."

I can't remember how the end credits of the final cut went (it's been a long time since I've seen the film version of the musical) but it seems clear to me that part of the audience reaction could've been psychologically toned down by using the ol' cinematic curtain call for the end credits: run the cast credits first, each name over a character montage.

Hey, there they all are! And they're alive! Movie magic!
posted by Spatch at 5:59 AM on November 11, 2008


Wow, this thread makes me feel old. Apparently nobody but ethnomethodologist is even aware that "The Little Shop of Horrors movie" was a remake, and those of us who were adults when it was made are far more aware of the original Roger Corman film from 1960. Now, my opinion is colored further by the fact that I hate musicals (except for the ones that I grew up with, like My Fair Lady), but if you haven't seen the original (with a young Jack Nicholson!), you should really do so ASAP.
posted by languagehat at 6:04 AM on November 11, 2008


Am I the only one who thinks the ending they went with was better? Maybe just cause I ADORED the movie and was obsessed with it when it came out (I was eight). I do remember my best friend had the soundtrack with the alternate ending song, and we were Disapproving. It's probably the weakest song in the movie/show. I love the girl group, though. "Skid Row" is such a great song.
posted by lunasol at 6:16 AM on November 11, 2008


Am I the only one who thinks the ending they went with was better?


Having seen stage productions of Little Shop .. I have a theory. The play is usually done broader, and more to it's B-movie roots. The movie is considerably sweeter and scaled back in tone, and the original ending's tone clashes.

Did the NYC revival include "Mean Green Mother From Outer Space"? I know it was written for the movie. I hope so, cause the singin' spores freaked me out something bad growing up.

Also, while "Don't Feed The Plants" is a pretty weak song, it can be a big-ass bombastic ending if sold right (and loudly).

I would gay marry you instantly, just for the awesomeness of that story.

He tripped up on the "Tell Lady Luck that I'm stuck here" line and we burst out laughing, having kept complete stone faces the entire time.

My only other LSoH story takes place in a karaoke bar in DC and I was drunk enough to perform a very suggestive version of "Grow For Me." and fall off the bar I was sitting on. Sigh.
posted by The Whelk at 6:53 AM on November 11, 2008 [2 favorites]


Wow, this thread makes me feel old. Apparently nobody but ethnomethodologist is even aware that "The Little Shop of Horrors movie" was a remake, and those of us who were adults when it was made are far more aware of the original Roger Corman film from 1960.

It's an adaptation of the off-broadway play, which is based on the original 1960 Corman film, so it's not really a direct remake.
posted by DecemberBoy at 8:15 AM on November 11, 2008


It's an adaptation of the off-broadway play, which is based on the original 1960 Corman film, so it's not really a direct remake.

Right, but that doesn't affect my point, which is that to write "The Little Shop of Horrors movie" (my emphasis) implies a lack of awareness that an earlier movie by that name existed.
posted by languagehat at 8:40 AM on November 11, 2008


I love the 1960 movie, up until the punchline in the last ten seconds of the film. "Don't Feed the Plants" is, by comparison, actually pretty scary.

But you know what I love? This blatantly misleading VHS tape that suggests that Nicholson plays a lead role.
posted by roll truck roll at 8:53 AM on November 11, 2008


Was this the first "It was a movie! it's a musical! It's a movie musical!" transition? I know in earlier film days, plays got turned into movies and movies into plays and pretty much anything was considered for a movie adaptation (Even, I believe, a poem. For some boxing movie. In the 40s.)

Oh wait, no. Auntie Mame. Book-play-movie-musical-movie-musical.

Also, damn, Cabaret

Short Story-Play-Musical-Movie Musical.

Nevermind.

I would be more down with more movies becoming musicals if they didn't suck so much. (Seriously? Hairspray? Don't make me re-write your lyrics in the opening song. It's a bad omen.)
posted by The Whelk at 9:17 AM on November 11, 2008


Oh! and just to fanboy flameout here, I would be remiss if I didn't include a link to Ellen Greene and Kristin Chenoweth singing:

Birdhouse In Your Soul

BroadwayTMBGLittleShop FUSION.
posted by The Whelk at 9:26 AM on November 11, 2008


I just wanted to brag that I have had this original ending in my collection for YEARS. For some unknown reason, the original recalled LSOH DVD showed up in stock on Borders shelves for a brief period about 5-6 years ago. I've enjoyed this ending for years, but never thought to put it out on YouTube. Sorry for being so selfish.

Also, I did the puppet work in a college production of LSOH and rocked the house in 'Feed Me.' It was harder than you think, because you have to sit on stage in a near fetal position for about 15-20 minutes without moving until that song kicks in. But it was a great acting experience because you don't control the voice - it was full-body physical lip syncing.

We also rewrote all the songs backstage to make them as vulgar as possible. So, "Suddenly Seymour" became:

"Su-dden-ly semen ... is shot deep inside you."
posted by Dirjy at 9:42 AM on November 11, 2008


Wow, this thread makes me feel old. Apparently nobody but ethnomethodologist is even aware that "The Little Shop of Horrors movie" was a remake

I've only seen the old version. Hope this rewinds the clock a bit.
posted by ersatz at 10:44 AM on November 11, 2008


I recently saw a production of Little Shop and watched the Roger Corman film. I think the musical improves on the source material.

Wish the movie musical had run with this ending.
posted by Zed_Lopez at 12:33 AM on November 12, 2008


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