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Today’s Sign the End is Nigh

“Ed Gein: The Musical.”

(Yes, you read that right.)

APPLETON – The man who influenced characters in the movies Psycho and Silence of the Lambs is now going to be shown in musical form.

More than 50 years after Ed Gein brought the spotlight to Plainfield in Waushara County, a Fox Valley group is bringing back his story, with “Ed Gein, The Musical.” In addition to being convicted of murder, Gein was known for robbing graves and turned body parts into furniture, ornaments and clothing. Now, after eight months of production and a budget of nine thousand dollars, the movie is about to hit the big screen this Saturday.

“Everyone in Wisconsin seems to have an Ed Gein connection whether or not they’re true, often times they’re not,” said Steve Russell, the director of the film. “But he’s part of the folklore that is Wisconsin.”

Many opposed to the film want Gein’s story wiped from that folklore. Producers Dan Davies and Steve Russell received hate mail and death threats about the film. One woman wrote, “Why bring this trash back to the daily living of all of us? It was terrible when it occurred and it’s twice as bad now.”

“It’s polarizing, we either have people that say wow, this is really great or wow, we want you gone, dead,” said Davies, who also plays Ed Gein.

It’s a musical that will even include parodies of famous songs, which has some outraged.

“You know, it’s like people who laugh at a funeral,” said Will Keizer, who wrote much of the music. “Why do they do that? That seems so inappropriate. But sometimes we have to laugh at dark things to be able to understand them.”

The idea started as a short YouTube clip and evolved into a full feature film. Davies says he didn’t want to make fun of the lives that were lost but rather show how Gein was raised to be a monster.

The movie/musical makes its world premiere at a small theater in UW-Fox Valley just south of Appleton in Menasha.

One wonders if there’s a song about lamp or purse-making.

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