A History of Horror
1930 - 1940.


Classic Creations.


The horror films in the 1930's, where talking pictures where now the norm, continued to be filled with the characters from early folklore. Vampires, Werewolves, Egyptian Mummies and various Monsters, particularly Frankenstien, all made numerous appearances during this era, establishing them all as classic horror characters that are still referred to in numerous films and novels to this day.


DraculaUniversal Studios pioneered the horror genre in this decade, which started with the hugely successful adaptation of "Dracula" in 1930, which not only made its leading actor Bela Lugosi a star, but boosted public interest in horror films.

Frankenstien Universal cashed in on the success of Dracula by adapting the Mary Shelly novel "Frankenstein", which launched Boris Karloff's horror career and proved even more successful than Dracula. They then followed this with their own versions of "Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde" and their unsuccessful version of "Hound of the Baskervilles" in 1931.

The failure of "Hound of the Baskervilles" didn't deter them from making the hugely succesfull "The Mummy" in 1932, which Boris Karloff also starred in. This year also saw the success of one of the most controversial horror films of the era, entitled "Freaks", which actually starred real sideshow freaks and proved to be too shocking for its day.

The MummyBela Lugosi also starred in a small independent production in this year, which turned out to be his second most notable role. This being the film "White Zombie" in which he played the character "Murder Legendre".

"The Island of Lost Souls" in 1933 was one of the first adaptations of the H.G.Wells novel Island of Dr Moreau. This starred Charles Laughton, Richard Arlen and Bela Lugosi who played the enigmatic "Sayer of the Law".

White ZombieHorror sequels were invented during this time, with follow ups to Frankenstein and Dracula being released, these being "Bride of Frankenstein" in 1935 and "Dracula's Daughter" in 1936, although neither of these were as successful as the original.

A third Frankenstein movie was later released in 1939 entitled "Son of Frankenstein", once again starring Boris Karloff, with Basil Rathbone as Dr Frankenstein and with Bela Lugosi appearing as Ygor the mad Shepard. Another, more successful, remake of "Hound of the Baskervilles" was also released this year with Basil Rathbone playing Sherlock Holmes (who would go on to reprise his role as Holmes in several other stories).

1900 - 1930 Silent Fear.
1930 - 1940 Classic Creations.
1940 - 1950 Chills and Chuckles...
1950 - 1960 Sci-fi, B-Movies and Hammer Horror.
1960 - 1970 Psycho's and Zombies.
1970 - 1980 The Birth of the Slasher.
1980 - 1990 Modern Horror Begins.
1990 - 2000 Scream until you like it.