Thursday, October 20, 2011

Happy Birthday, Bela Lugosi! (1882 - 1956)

Today (11 days before Halloween) is the birth date of charismatic Hungarian actor, Bela Lugosi. The one and only movie Dracula. He'd starred in the stage show based on Bram Stoker's horror story, but, according to Wikipedia, he may not have been the first choice to play Dracula in the 1931 movie. Lon Chaney might have been in the offing, but his death put paid to that idea.

Whatever the long ago truth, Bela Lugosi stepped in and made the part forever his own.

Though he was typecast as a horror villain for the rest of his troubled life, Bela Lugosi is viewed with perpetual affection by all lovers of early melodramatic horror films.

He played a variety of colorful villains in many different movies; Igor in SON OF FRANKENSTEIN is especially memorable.

But Bela Lugosi's image as Dracula is the one which instantly pops into our minds when we hear the word: vampire. At least, to movie fans of a certain age - like me.

In my view, there is only one Count Dracula.

To learn more about Bela Lugosi, please check out his Wikipedia page at this link.



  1. Hello Yvette:
    Yes, we are in complete agreement here. Bela Lugosi will be for ever Dracula in our eyes too. Even Christopher Lee could only come in second place.

    And, a Hungarian to boot, a famous son of stage and screen although it was certainly his 'villain' film appearances that were his most memorable and important.

  2. Hi, Jane and Lance, it's good to have you back again around these parts. :)

    Old Bela would have liked being remembered around the world today.

    But I say: who could forget him?

  3. I'm still looking out for his movies though I'm confident TCM or MGM will show them soon. What better way to pay tribute to Bela Lugosi. He has such an intense look about him.

  4. Prashant: He was wonderful, very intense, yes. I hope you get a chance to view these films as well.

  5. Second (or third) the motion about Lugosi's Dracula: I've never enjoyed any other performers in the role as I enjoyed and enjoy Lugosi. He led a rather sad life, particularly in his later years - professionally because of the typecasting which crippled his career and personally because of his problem with prescription painkillers. But his Dracula continues to entertain us.

  6. I'm glad we agree, Les. He was an original. Too bad he was typecast all the rest of his life.

    But that's the chance an actor takes. At least he left behind a memorable performance.

  7. I really never like anyone else in the role of Dracula. I just wish Bela Lugosi had been able to create a succesfull carrer instead of the one he was able to piece together.


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