Classic Horror - Tuesdays in October
Throughout October, as Halloween approaches, TCM focuses each Tuesday night on all things horrific. We showcase some of the most iconic films from the 1930s through the 1960s to demonstrate how classic horror has evolved over the years, providing chills and thrills for generations past and those to come.
The 1930s saw Universal Pictures dominate the world of cinematic horror with a series of classic films including Frankenstein (1931) and Bride of Frankenstein (1935), both starring Boris Karloff as the iconic monster. Other Universal horror classics included The Old Dark House (1932), The Mummy (1932) and The Black Cat (1934), all starring Karloff; and The Invisible Man (1933) with Claude Rains. At Paramount, Charles Laughton top-lined Island of Lost Souls (1932) while Bob Hope mixed terror and laughter in The Cat and the Canary (1939).
The 1940s added a new classic monster to Universal's lineup with The Wolf Man (1941), starring Lon Chaney, Jr. Meanwhile, at RKO, producer Val Lewton made horror history with a series of cultish thrillers including Cat People (1942), I Walked with a Zombie (1943), The Seventh Victim (1943), The Leopard Man (1943), The Ghost Ship (1943), The Curse of the Cat People (1944), Isle of the Dead (1945), The Body Snatcher (1945) and Bedlam (1946). The last three starred Karloff.
The 1950s found the U.K.'s Hammer Film Productions making a stylish entrance into the world of horror with such films as The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), starring Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee as the doctor and his monster. Also from England came Curse of the Demon (1958), starring Dana Andrews; and The Mummy (1959), again teaming Lee and Cushing. In America, Vincent Price was becoming an important horror star thanks to such films as House on Haunted Hill (1959) and The Bat (1959).
The 1960s brought such prestigious mainstream horror films as The Innocents (1961) and The Haunting (1963); along with low-budget remakes (The Old Dark House, 1963), cult classics (Carnival of Souls, 1962) and Vincent Price vehicles (Diary of a Madman, 1963). Hammer Films continued producing supernatural thrillers including The Curse of the Werewolf (1961, TCM premiere), Plague of the Zombies (1966) and The Reptile (1966). Also from England, but released through 20th Century Fox, was The Devil's Bride (1968).