Year 2000
Studio N/A
Producer

Andrew Leman

Sean Branney

Director

Andrew Leman

Sean Branney

Writer

Andrew Leman

Sean Branney

Music ??
Cast

Andrew Leman

Sean Branney

Stuart Gordon

Chris Sarandon

Length 20 mins

 
A Shoggoth on the Roof

‘‘ It was going to suck . . . I mean suck. ’’

In 1979 the Other Gods Theatre, a troupe of Los Angeles thespians, began production of a theatrical event like none ever before attempted. Using the score of a classic American musical, they adapted the collected works of H.P. Lovecraft into an all-dancing, all-singing theatre extravaganza: A Shoggoth on the Roof.

For reasons not entirely known, the production failed to open and the members of the company went their separate ways. Their bold enterprise would likely have vanished into the footnotes of musical theatre history were it not for one fact. An unknown party captured a rehearsal on Super 8 movie film.

In 1999, long-time Lovecraftian writers/producers Sean Branney and Andrew Leman managed to obtain a forgotten press release and the only known copy of this footage from A Shoggoth on the Roof. With these clues, they set out on a relentless mission: to learn who would actually attempt to stage a Lovecraftian musical, and what happened when they did. The result is A Shoggoth on the Roof: the Documentary.

This investigative documentary intercuts between original production footage and contemporary interviews with Lovecraftian luminaries. The filmmakers track down cast members from the 1979 production, some of whom went on to receive Oscar… nominations, others of whom were confined in psychiatric institutions.

Although mystery still shrouds the production, this 20 minute documentary irrefutably proves that there are some things man was not meant to adapt to musical theatre.