Saturday, November 30, 2013
WHEN FRANKENSTEIN'S MONSTER MEETS THE WOLFMAN WATCH THE FUR FLY!
March 5th of this year marked the 70th anniversary of Universal Pictures' release of one of the great "monster rally" films of all time, FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN. Just five years later, the comedy team of Bud Abbott and Lou Costello gave us every major monster that Universal had in their catalog (with the notable exception of The Mummy -- but they met him later on his own) in ABBOTT & COSTELLO MEET FRANKENSTEIN. But FMTWM was tied together with the original oeuvre of Universal's gothic monster films in ways that A&C's version didn't, and ultimately was notable for being the film that marked the departure from the classic era that began with DRACULA in 1931.
Regrettably, FAMOUS MONSTERS OF FILMLAND never published a filmbook of FMTWM, but a photo feature appeared in the 42nd issue, dated January 1967 (the contents page shows 1966). However, a nearly wordless article leaves the reader with the impressions that they have seen much of it without the sometimes dreary text that accompanied some of the filmbooks.
The opening sequence, shot by cameraman George Robinson with the help of Art Director John Goodman and perhaps even John P. Fulton, is one of the most atmospheric ever to be lensed for a Universal horror film. That it came later in the series makes it even more notable.
The promotion for the film was considerable, as posters, stills and pressbooks heralded the newest of the Universal monster thrillers.
Years later, FRANKENSTEIN MEETS THE WOLFMAN was a part of the Shock Theater package sold to network television.