Dracula - Sundays in October
Perhaps the most sinister - and erotic - of all movie monsters is Count Dracula, who has been haunting the public imagination since Bram Stoker published his Gothic horror novel Dracula in 1897. Join TCM as we celebrate the fanged fiend who established the vampire myth and popularized it on the screen. Our fest spans films from five decades and begins with the seminal 1931 Dracula, directed by Tod Browning for Universal Pictures and starring the actor most people still associate with the Transylvania terror, Bela Lugosi.
Completing a trilogy of classic Universal vampire tales are two offspring: Gloria Holden in the title role of Dracula's Daughter (1936) and Lon Chaney, Jr. as Son of Dracula (1943). House of Dracula (1945) teams the legendary vampire (played by John Carradine) with Universal's other two popular monsters, the Frankenstein Monster (Glenn Strange) and the Wolf Man (Lon Chaney Jr.). United Artists' The Return of Dracula (1958) is set in contemporary California, where the Count arrives in the form of an artist named Francis Lederer.
Horror of Dracula (1958) is the first of the British Hammer Horror films with Christopher Lee's chilling interpretation of the vampire. The Brides of Dracula (1960) is also from Hammer, and although Dracula himself does not appear in the film, Peter Cushing reprises his role as Van Helsing. Lee returns in all his bloody glory in the title role of Hammer's Dracula, Prince of Darkness (1966). John Carradine, in turn, reprises his role as Dracula in the fanciful Billy the Kid vs. Dracula (1966), a low budget American horror-Western in which the vampire attempts to steal the fiancée of the famous outlaw (Chuck Courtney).
Christopher Lee has his third outing as the Count in Hammer's Dracula Has Risen from the Grave (1968), in which Dracula is once again destroyed - although Lee would return in the role for six more movies, including Taste the Blood of Dracula (1970) and Dracula A.D. 1972 (1972).