My first Lee film on the big screen? Airport ’77. “Mom. Is that the guy that plays Dracula?” I may not have known his name yet but that’s a true story which tells me that even as a little tyke I had already discovered film books in the public library and books on horror films and westerns were the ones I kept thumbing through looking at the big glossy pics and dreaming of the on screen adventures that awaited me.


I would imagine most of us cannot say they are a product of the Karloff – Lugosi era. Unless you’ve found the fountain of youth that is. And no I’m not a kid of the late fifties when Hammer Studios unleashed a new reign of classic monsters terrorizing the cinemas worldwide. I guess what I am is a kid who discovered those black and white Universal films on late night TV like the rest of you who are old enough to remember life before the VHS Machine. Extra special were finding those color films that breathed new life into the world of horrors from England that usually featured Peter Cushing facing off with Christopher Lee.


The fact that Lee, Cushing and Vincent Price as well were alive when I started to study film history put them squarely into my watching habits as well as collecting when it came to movie memorabilia. Having outlived everyone else that made a name for themselves in horror films, Lee not only acclaimed iconic status once with his Hammer output but really did so again with the amount of work he put on camera late in life. I’d like to think it led fans of the Rings and Star Wars sagas to seek out his work from years gone past so they can connect the dots from Dracula to Scaramanga to Saruman.

1957 – where it all really started.


Moving into Iconic status. The first film I saw with Lee as the Count was the second film, Dracula- Prince of Darkness. I caught up with the first film in my teens and recall going years without seeing it again. Funny story to go with that is a rep theater here in town was playing 1922’s Nosferatu and The Horror of Dracula as a Halloween special. You could pay for both titles or see one or the other. I opted to see Horror of Dracula alone and when I went to the theater to sit in, they had switched the times putting Dracula on first and Nosferatu second due to some glitch on the film that had caused delays in getting Nosferatu up and running. So of course I missed the film I had wanted to see as they played it first and sadly, I’ve yet to see it on a big screen.


A triumphant trilogy.


A must see for not only Lee fans but horror films of the era is this film also known as Horror Hotel.


Picking up the pipe for a go around as Sherlock Holmes.


Working with Mario Bava who was at the height of his powers equals another must see.


Adding Fu Manchu to his list of evil characters.


Loving these foreign film posters. The Scars of Dracula. Lee may have gotten tired playing the Count but I don’t think his fans ever did. Click for posts on Dracula A.D. ….. The Satanic Rites of DraculaCount Dracula and Dracula and Son.


We all know this is the best of the non- Hammer Lee-Cushing duets. “Monsters? We’re British you know.”


I for one still think this final Hammer film is underrated and deserves a second look. Scared the hell out of me seeing it at an impressionable age on late night TV when Mom and Dad were fast asleep. Hush…… don’t tell them I snuck back downstairs in the middle of the night and kept the TV volume low while I trembled under a blanket.


Here’s an oddity that I actually have a poster of but have never seen the film or found the chance to acquire a copy.


Let’s be honest, there are just way to many posters I could have featured in this gallery. The man has an amazing amount of films to his name and with posters released in various corners of the world, it would be nearly impossible to find and collect them all. Now there’s a challenge for those with a few dollars to spare. I currently have 20 posters of Lee in the private vault. Titles like The Gorgon, Dracula A.D. , The Three Musketeers, Crimson Cult and even his own production company, Charlemagne’s Nothing But the Night. All nice to have I grant you but more importantly I have what some might consider the Holy Grail of Lee titles……… Lord Summerisle anyone?