Thursday, November 14, 2013
JACK PIERCE'S FIRST (ON SCREEN) WEREWOLF
Currently on the auction block is a scarce insert poster (13" X 36") for Universal's WEREWOLF OF LONDON. The makeup for actor Henry Hull was modified from a version that had a heavier hair application than makeup artist Jack Pierce had originally intended. Hull thought so much of himself as an actor, he didn't want his face obscured by the Yak hair that Pierce used as wolf fur. Pierce was a proud and strict disciplinarian himself, and it would be interesting to know how the compromise came about.
The current bid on this premium piece of Universal Horror history is $40,360.00. Here are the details from the lot:
Werewolf of London (Universal, 1935). Insert (14" X 36").
When Universal decided to make its first foray into the werewolf genre, they brought in master makeup artist Jack Pierce to create the perfect specimen. What he created was considered so horrific that the makeup was shelved until 1941 when Universal would cast Lon Chaney in The Wolf Man. The makeup used in this film was 'abbreviated,' yet many consider it to be superior. Henry Hull was cast as the accursed scientist and Warner Oland (taking a break from his roles as Charlie Chan) was his nemesis - another werewolf on the search for a cure to their mutual fate. The posters for this title have always been some of the rarest of the Universal horror cycle. The insert format is particularly hard to find, as only a handful are known to exist! Signs of handling include surface paper loss at the top and bottom left corner, a slight scuff in the top left background, tears in the borders with tape on the verso, a smudge in the bottom right corner, pinholes in the borders and middle image area with tape on the verso, and creases at the bottom left and top right corner. A phenomenal opportunity for horror flick fans! Rolled, Fine+. Estimate: $35,000 - $55,000.