House of Frankenstein released December 1, 1944
House of Frankenstein is an American monster horror film produced in 1944 by Universal Studios as a sequel to Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man the previous year. This monster rally approach would continue in the following film, House of Dracula, as well as the 1948 comedy Abbott and Costello Meet Frankenstein.
Tagline: FRANKENSTEIN’S MONSTER! WOLF MAN! DRACULA! HUNCHBACK! MAD DOCTOR!
- Despite the title, this is the first of the Universal Frankenstein films in which a member of the Frankenstein family does not appear.
- Bela Lugosi was slated for the role of Dracula, but the film was dependent upon the presence of Karloff being released from tour of “Arsenic and Old Lace.” Shooting was delayed, and John Carrdine was cast instead of Lugosi, who had a prior engagement: ironically, playing Karloff’s “Jonathan Brewster” role in another touring company of “Arsenic and Old Lace.”
- Originally Kharis the mummy, another Universal “classic monster”, was to be in the movie but was removed because of budget restrictions.
- Originally titled ‘The Devil’s Brood’, this was given a $354,000 budget and a relatively generous (by Universal standards) 30-day shooting schedule. Star Boris Karloff earned $20,000 and Lon Chaney Jr. received a flat $10,000 for his third appearance as the Wolf Man. John Carradine and J. Carrol Naish were both paid $7,000 each. Lionel Atwill earned $1750 and George Zucco was paid $1500. Glenn Strange was paid $500 for his role as Frankenstein’s monster.
- The title “House of…” could refer to the ruins/house owned by Ludwig Frankenstein, the second son of Henry Frankenstein (portrayed by Cedric Hardwicke) in The Ghost of Frankenstein (1942). It’s also the same “house” where Lawrence Talbot discovers the Monster in ice in Frankenstein Meets the Wolf Man (1943); and, of course, where Neiman discovers the Wolfman and the Monster in this film. (The castle is entirely washed away in the flood at the climax of ” – Meets the Wolf Man,” but is inexplicably semi-intact here.
- Glenn Strange was the fourth actor to play the Monster in Universal’s Frankenstein series. The actor who played the original Monster, Boris Karloff, was also present in the film, playing the role of Dr. Niemann. Being on the set, Karloff was able to personally coach Strange in the way the Monster should be played.
- Universal employed an actress to dub actress’s screams for their horror films, but Elena Verdugo’s scream worked so well, it was retained in the final version.
Tagged with: Horror • House of Dracula • House of Frankenstein • J. Carrol Naish • John Carradine • Lionel Atwill • Lon Chaney Jr. • monster • monster rally • Universal Studios • Wolf Man • • Boris Karloff
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