Sunday, December 4, 2016

This Week in Fright Film History December 6 to 12, 2015

Cat People (1942) a horror film produced by Val Lewton and directed by Jacques Tourneur. DeWitt Bodeen wrote the original screenplay which was based on Val Lewton's short story The Bagheeta(1930). The film stars Simone Simon, Kent Smith, Jane Randolph and Tom Conway and was rleased on December 6, 1942. Cat People (1942) would be the first production for producer Val Lewton.

House of Dracula (1945) a sequel to House of Frankenstein (1941) was released on December 7, 1945. The film featured three of Universal's most popular monsters: Frankenstein's monster (Glenn Strange), Count Dracula (John Carradine) and the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney, Jr.). Although House of Dracula (1945) was a financially successful, it  would be  the last Universal horror movie featuring Frankenstein's monster, vampires and werewolves.

The Strange Door (1951) released by Universal Pictures on December 8,1951 starred Charles Laughton, Boris Karloff, Sally Forrest and Richard Stapley. Directed by Joseph Pevney,  The Strange Door (1951) was based on the short story, The Sire de Maletroit's Door by Robert   Louis Stevenson.

Margaret Hamilton an American film actress best known for her role as Miss Almira Gulch and the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz (1939) and 13 Ghost (1960)   was born on December 9,1902 .  Hamilton had been a schoolteacher before becoming an actor.

Edward Davis "Ed" Wood, Jr. an American screenwriter, director, producer, actor, author and film editor died from a heart attack on December 10, 1978, he was 54 years old. In the 1950s, Wood wrote, produced and directed a number of low-budget science fiction, horror and cowboy films.  In 1980, he was posthumously awarded a Golden Turkey Award as Worst Director of All Time.

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