Peter Cushing: Reinventing Frankenstein


Tribute today to Peter Cushing (1913-1994).

After starting out at a repertory theatre in Sussex, Cushing briefly tried his luck in Hollywood, where he got bit parts and small roles from 1939 to 1941. Returning to Britain, he continued to work in film and tv in the 40s and 50s, but didn’t achieve star status until he began his association with Hammer Horror. His streak began with The Curse of Frankenstein (1957) and Dracula (1958); he was to revisit the roles of Victor Frankenstein and Dr. Van Helsing numerous times over the years, as he would Sherlock Holmes, starting with The Hound of the Baskervilles (1959). He also starred in The Abominable Snowman (1957), The Mummy (1959), The Gorgon (1964) and dozens of similar pictures into the 1980s. Cushing was also very much associated with science fiction and fantasy, thanks to starring roles in two theatrically release feature films of Dr. Who and his high profile turn as the villain Grand Moff Tarkin in Star Wars (1977).

In case you didn’t know, Cushing’s best friend and frequent co-star was Christopher Lee, whose birthday is the day after Peter Cushing’s! What evil star gave birth to the two of them within 48 hours?

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