Wednesday, May 18, 2005

Masters of Horror - (Hammer) Biography for Terence Fisher

Biography for Terence Fisher:

His break came in 1956 when, at the age of 52, he was asked to helm Hammer Studio's remake of Frankenstein. The Curse of Frankenstein broke box office receipts and enraged critics world wide who were unaccustomed to its brand of hearty blood letting. The Eastmancolor shocker set a new standard for horror films and helped to make Fisher, Hammer, and stars Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee into bankable commodities. Wits its emphasis on realistic character interplay over melodramatic conventions, the film established Fisher's personal approach to horror, which stood in direct defiance to the old Universal films--in fact, Fisher flatly refused to watch James Whale's 1931 version for fear that it might influence his vision. More remakes soon followed. Fisher actively sought to remake Dracula, and the results proved to be both aesthetically and commercially superior to Curse of Frankenstein. Dracula (aka Horror of Dracula) proved to be universally popular and is commonly held as Fisher's--and Hammer's--finest work.