SYNOPSIS: Frankenstein: The True Story was a 2-part miniseries on NBC-TV in 1973, made by Universal Pictures. Directed by Jack Smight (Midway), the all-star cast included James Mason, Leonard Whiting, Michael Sarrazin, David McCallum, Jane Seymour, Agnes Moorehead, Tom Baker, Sir Ralph Richardson and Sir John Gielgud.
Investigative journalist Sam Irvin's tell-all behind the making of this groundbreaking production has many facets. It is an eye-opening exposé on the movie industry of the early 1970s with an emphasis on Universal Pictures and the horror genre. But the chronicle also reveals a hidden agenda " fueled by the astonishing courage of a revolutionary group of LGBTQ+ artists spearheaded by producer Hunt Stromberg Jr. and his screenwriters Christopher Isherwood (The Berlin Stories " the basis for Cabaret) and his lover, artist Don Bachardy. This self-proclaimed "Lavender Hill Mob" actively plotted to sneak as much queer subtext into the film as possible, without censors catching on to their scheme.
Also included in this book is a comprehensive biography of the film’s producer Hunt Stromberg Jr., who discovered Vampira, hired Boris Karloff to voice the Grinch, produced a play with Bela Lugosi, teamed Vincent Price with Peter Lorre, was friends with both Lon Chaney Jr. and Sr., met Elsa Lanchester when she was filming Bride of Frankenstein, and cast Yvonne De Carlo as Lily Munster. He developed The Twilight Zone, supervised Alfred Hitchcock Presents, greenlit Lost in Space, settled The Wild Wild West, beautified Frankenstein’s Creature, got stomped by King Kong, and was cursed by the Mummy. He helped launch the careers of Carol Burnett and Clint Eastwood, escorted Mae West, got Liberace to perform at his parties, had a James Bond supervillain named after him, fired Judy Garland, and was snubbed by Queen Elizabeth (twice). And that’s just for starters. You will read fascinating letters he received from Lugosi, Hitchcock, Carl Laemmle Jr., John Boorman, Julie Christie, and more!
Large format hard cover book, with more than 400 pages in full color, 1200 photos.
Artwork by: Mark Maddox (cover artist), Graham Humphreys, Daniel Horne, Frederick Cooper, Dan Gallagher, Paul Garner, Brux aka David Brooks, Paul Watts, Bruce Timm, Don Bachardy, Robert Risko, Mel Odom, Greg Staples, Dave Matsuoka, Adrian Salmon, Ron Hezekiah, Oscar Calibos, and Stefano Junior.
With lush graphic design by Steve Kirkham, this book is the massively expanded version of Sam Irvin’s coverage of Frankenstein: The True Story in his own Bizarre fanzine No. 3 (1974); in Richard Klemensen’s Little Shoppe of Horrors magazine No. 38 (2017) for which Irvin won the Rondo Award for Best Article; and in the extras for Shout! Factory’s Blu-ray of the movie (2020) for which Irvin won the Rondo Award for Best Audio Commentary.