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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

William Castle Tribute- Introduction

April 24, 1914 saw the birth of a horror movie icon to a Jewish family living in New York.  This icon's name was William Schloss.  This child would eventually translate his last name from German into English... becoming the person that would one day be known for creating some of the most beloved horror b-movies ever made.  He would become such an icon that he'd wind up inspiring a movie character, and having a production company named for him.

This child would grow up to become the icon known as William Castle.

I don't think there is a true horror fan alive who DOESN'T know who William Castle is- or haven't seen at LEAST one of his films.  He was known for his famous "gimmicks" that he used to advertize his films- often being the subject of jokes by movie people.  But underneath those jokes, I'd wager that the people making them harbor a good amount of admiration and respect for Mr. Castle.  He was bold, ingenious, and a showman that turned a simple movie into an experience to never forget.

I know I admire him.  In today's rather bland movie industry, I would love to have been present during a screening of "The Tingler" so that I could scream for my life as my seat buzzes and rattles under me- or to have a glow in the dark skeleton fly over my head.

So, in tribute to William Castle's brithday this month, I'll be posting articles about his life, his movies, his gimmicks... and life after William Castle.

Here's to hoping he enjoys these articles... from beyond the grave...