Tuesday, August 31, 2010
Fredric March, born August 31, 1897, may not have had a career in horror, but he does have the distinction of winning the very first Academy Award for Best Actor in a horror role, that of the title character in MGM's 1931 classic, DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE, an honor that wouldn't come to another actor for another 60 years, when Anthony Hopkins won his Oscar for THE SILENCE OF THE LAMBS. Fredric did manage to win yet another Oscar for Leading Male Actor in 1946 for THE BEST YEARS OF OUR LIVES. Fredric's roles were mostly always in dramatic films, but he did manage to play "Death" in DEATH TAKES A HOLIDAY in 1934. fredric had a very long and successful career in films, spanning 6 decades. Happy Birthday Fredric!
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
(pictured with Lon Chaney Jr. and Bela Lugosi)
Evelyn Ankers, born August 17, 1918, is definitely a familiar face to the classic horror fans. Known as "the Queen of Screamers", Evelyn starred in many classiC horror films throughout the 1930s-40s, such as THE WOLFMAN, THE MAD GHOUL, THE GHOST OF FRANKENSTEIN, SON OF DRACULA and many others. Usually playing the love interest/damsel in distress, Evelyn had a very long career in film and television, starring in horror classics, as well as dramas and comedies. Evelyn sadly passed away on August 29, 1985, from ovarian cancer, but her roles will never be forgotten. Happy Birthday to one of Hollywood's original Scream Queens!
Monday, August 16, 2010
Today marks the 33rd anniversary of the death of Elvis Presley. I am old enough to recall when he died and all the insanity that ensued afterward. Here are a couple of little mentions in honor of the anniversary of his death. Comedian Johnny Carson once quipped, "If life was fair, Elvis would still be alive and all the impersonators dead." Also, Larry Geller, who was Elvis's former hairstylist, was responsible for styling Elvis's hair for the sad occasion of his funeral. When setting about his task, he was startled to find that Elvis had half an inch of white-colored regrowth under his dyed black hair. Geller quickly improvised a touch-up job using a black mascara wand. Long Live The King!
(pictured here with Lenore Aubert and Bela Lugosi)
Glenn Strange, born August 16, 1899, was one of Hollywood's hardest working character actors, yet many people will always remember him as the man who filled the Frankenstein monster's shoes after Boris Karloff. Although Bela Lugosi and Lon Chaney Jr. both had their opportunities at portraying the Frankenstein monster after Boris Karloff originated the role, no other actor had the success or recognition than Glenn Strange, who went on to portray the monster in HOUSE OF FRANKENSTEIN, HOUSE OF DRACULA, and the wildly popular and hysterical ABBOTT AND COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN. The bulk of Glenn's career consisted of roles in many Hollywood westerns, always portraying henchmen, gun-slingers and thugs. He mostly played ominous characters, due to his lumbering height of 6'5". He eventually went on to achieve television success on the popluar TV western GUNSMOKE, which starred another Hollywood horror alumni, James Arness. Glenn unfortunately passed away from lung cancer on September 20th, 1973. Of his many roles in Hollywood, Glenn will always be loved by horror fans as the Frankenstein Monster! Happy Birthday Glenn!
Friday, August 13, 2010
Born on August 13, 1899, Alfred Hitchcock went on to become one of Hollywood's greatest directors, earning the title of "Master of Suspense". With such classics as "NORTH BY NORTHWEST", "The BIRDS", "STRANGERS ON A TRAIN" and of course my all-time favorite Hitchcock film "PSYCHO", his films went on to become some of Hollywood's best-loved and highly regarded films. Check out Hitchcock's filmography, as well as his very popular "Alfred Hitchcock Presents..." TV show (all available on DVD). Hitchcock sadly passed away April 29th, 1980, but his film legacy will live on forever! Happy Birthday to the Master Of Suspense!
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
JOHN LANDIS, born August 3, 1950, may be well-known as a director of famous Hollywood comedies such as ANIMAL HOUSE and TRADING PLACES, but to me he will always be the director of my all-time favorite werewolf movie, AN AMERICAN WEREWOLF IN LONDON. John has had his share of horror in his career, starting with the low-budget horror satire SCHLOCK, then of course with An American Werewolf In London. John also delved into the music video business by creating possibly one of the best music videos in history, Michael Jackson's THRILLER! John Landis later went on to direct the horror/comedy INNOCENT BLOOD, and let's not forget his entries into the Masters Of Horror series, DEER WOMAN and FAMILY. John is currently filming BURKE AND HARE, a film about the 2 most famous body snatchers in history. John has an incredible knack for mixing horror with comedy, something many have attempted but have failed miserably at. I had the pleasure of meeting and speaking with John Landis last year and Spooky Empire's Weekend Of Horror in Orlando, Florida. He was an absolute riot! He was incredibly friendly and funny, and was definitely a high point for me. In fact, he saw my son Zachary and absolutely fell in love with him, snatched him from me and wouldn't give him back! (check out the pics below, also pictured with Paul Davis, director of the amazing AWIL documentary BEWARE THE MOON). Happy Birthday to one of Hollywood's best, John Landis!
(here I am pictured with John Landis and Paul Davis)
(Here's John threatening to keep Zachary)
(John cooing over Zachary)
(John finally hands Zachary back over to me!)
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Hell-o there boils and ghouls!
Welcome to the latest installment of
MONSTER SPOOKSHOW RADIO!
The summer heat has been blaring down, and what better way to cool
off than with a nice blast of bloody beats!
This month's screamin' sizzlers are:
KILLER CREATURE DOUBLE FEATURE - Mr. Underhill
MONSTER IN A DRAGSTER - The Braineaters
MUNSTERS THEME - The Escalators
FULL MOON HOP - Memphis Morticians
FRANKENSTEIN'S DEN - The Hollywood Flames
HAUNTED CASTLE - The Kingsmen
I'M YOUR ZOMBIE - The Spectres
I PUT A SPELL ON YOU - Screamin' Jay Hawkins
REDNECK ZOMBIES - PsychoCharger
MY MAN'S AN UNDERTAKER - Dinah Washington
WEREWOLF - Five Man Electrical Band
VAMPIRE GIRL - Devil's Brigade
DR. JEKYLL AND MR. HYDE - The Who
MONSTER SQUAD - Coffin Caddies
AIN'T IT GRAND TO BE BLOOMING WELL DEAD - Blarmy Brothers
THE LURCH - Ted Cassidy
DATE WITH A VAMPIRE - The Screaming Tribesmen
MONSTERS LEAD SUCH INTERESTING LIVES - Mel Torme'
OLD BORIS - Bela La Goldstein
VAMPIRE IN THE SUN - Johnny Nightmare
Just click on the image above to get the latest installment of
MONSTER SPOOKSHOW RADIO!
George Van Orsdel