No one could ever surpass Bela Lugosi as the quintessential Dracula, but Christopher Lee came close in the Hammer film, Horror of Dracula. He reprised the role several times, but the best and most memorable performance was in that initial 1958 movie.
Count von Count made his debut on Sesame Street in 1972, voiced by Jerry Nelson. Along with Cookie Monster and Oscar the Grouch, the Count was one of my favorite Sesame Street Muppets growing up. I did not understand the significance of a vampire counting back then, though, and most still do not. Evidently, one way to defend yourself against a vampire is to keep a pocketful of seeds, and when he comes to attack, throw the seeds on the ground. The undead suffer from an obsessive compulsive disorder, and must count things. So while he is counting the seeds you tossed on the ground, you can make your escape!
Dracula returned to the big screen in 2014 with Luke Evans playing the legendary character in Dracula Untold. Universal is reportedly attempting to build a Marvel-style universe using iconic horror figures such as Dracula, Frankenstein, and the Wolf Man.Dracula Untold was a good movie, but felt more like an action film with vampiric elements than a horror movie. Evans’ performance was memorable, however, and it will be interesting to see Universal’s future releases in the series.
When Dracula was released in 1931, Variety wrote, “It is difficult to think of anybody who could quite match the performance in the vampire part of Bela Lugosi, even to the faint flavor of foreign speech that fits so neatly.” Lugosi’s performance has been the standard by which all other vampiric actors have been judged.
Tod Browning’s Dracula was filmed during the day; at night, the costumes and sets were being used to film a Spanish-language version of the film with Carlos Villarias in the role of Conde Dracula. This version was long though to be lost, but in the 1970s it was discovered and restored, and is often included as a bonus feature on releases of the English-language version.
A third, silent, version of Dracula was released in 1931 to theaters that had not yet been wired for sound.
Last year, we featured “Horror Fun Cards” each day during the month of October (and those will be reposted at TWJ fun cards on tumblr beginning Thursday). What does The Writer’s Journey have in store for 2015? A brand new original series called “Vampire Legends”! Be sure to come back Thursday and every day during the month of October to see all 51 “Vampire Legends” cards!
(May 27, 1922 – June 7, 2015)
Before he was Count Dooku, he was Count Dracula. Iconic horror film actor Christopher Lee passed away on Sunday at the age of 93.
In celebration of Peter Cushing’s 100th birthday and in conjunction with The Peter Cushing Centennial Blogathon hosted by Frankensteinia: The Frankenstein Blog, The Writer’s Journey presents a parody.
A long time ago, Peter Cushing played Van Helsing in a number of Dracula films produced by Hammer Studios. When he was cast as Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars: A New Hope, no one expected him to get confused. But he did.
I have some stuff stacking up, but no time to get to a proper post at the moment, so why don’t you watch some classic monster movies? Here are some legendary titles currently streaming on Netflix (if you don’t have an account, you can sign up for a free 30-day trial here):
- Dracula starring Bela Lugosi
- The Wolf Man starring Lon Chaney Jr.
- Son of Frankenstein starring Boris Karloff (too bad the original and Bride of are not currently available)
- Creature from the Black Lagoon
- The Invisible Man
- The Phantom of the Opera
That ought to keep you busy for a few minutes.
I love going to the Dollar Tree stores in the area. Yes, I said stores, as in more than one. There are three in my county, and another close to my workplace one county over.
A few days ago, we made the rounds at our three most local DT’s. And I found some horribly awesome stuff.
Creepy Classics Playing Cards.
I love all things horror. That’s no secret. And when I can get my hands on something cool like this, I do it without thinking twice.
Actually I did think twice, but I bought them anyway.
Man, I can’t wait for Halloween season to hit again. Just imagine all the awesomely cheap junk the Dollar Tree will have then!!!