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UK’s Horror Channel to celebrate Peter Cushing Centenary

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While I’m only familiar with the UK’s horror-specific network through Twitter, it’s been enough to cause a fair amount of envy at their well-curated lineups. That programming has now been applied to a celebration of one of the most beloved actors in genre history on this May 26, as the Horror Channel reveals their lineup in honor of the Peter Cushing Centenary.

Integral to the legacy of both Hammer and Amicus, and so much more beyond, expect much more on Cushing right here at Fango, as well. For now, you can find the Horror Channel’s Sunday, May 26 line-up below:

• 10:00.  FRANKENSTEIN CREATED WOMAN (1967)

Hammer Horror’s Frankenstein Created Woman sees Cushing in one of his most famous roles, that of Baron Frankenstein. Here the sinister scientist embarks upon his most ambitious work – bringing a young maiden back to life using the twisted soul of an executed man. Directed by Terence Fisher, this is the fourth film in Hammer’s Frankenstein series and seen as the most ambitious dealing, not with the physical aspects of the Baron’s work, but with questions of the soul, and its relationship to the body.

• 12:00  THE BLOOD BEAST TERROR (1968)

Relishing his role as a Victorian super-sleuth, Peter Cushing stars as Inspector Quennell, a Scotland Yard detective sent to a small town in the English countryside to investigate a series of suspicious deaths. Clues led him to renowned entomology professor Dr. Carl Mallinger (Robert Flemying). Through his beautiful daughter Clare, Mallinger has created a ‘were-moth’, a she-creature capable of transforming into a murderous Death Head moth.

• 13:30  I, MONSTER (1971)

In this loose adaption of the Dr. Jekyll, Mr Hyde story, Cushing teams up with horror-thesp regular Christopher Lee. Lee plays Charles Marlowe, a psychologist who invents a drug which will release his patients’ inhibitions. But when Marlowe tests it on himself he becomes the cruel, murderous Edward Blake. It’s up to Marlowe’s lawyer, Utterson (Cushing), to discover the truth. The film was intended to be in 3-D, but that was aborted mid-production.

• 15:00 THE BEAST MUST DIE (1974)

In this ‘beastly’ whodunit, Cushing shines as archaeologist and lycanthropy enthusiast Dr. Lundgre – one of a number of invited guests of wealthy sportsman (Calvin Lockhart) to a big-game hunt. He’s sure that one of them is a werewolf and he intends to stalk and kill it. Near the conclusion, the audience have a 30-second interlude during which they can decide, who the hunted beast is. Due to the small production budget, the “werewolf” was played by a German shepherd dog

• 16:50  HAMMER HOUSE OF HORROR: ‘The Silent Scream’ (1980)

Cushing gives a finely-tuned performance of benign menace as Martin Blueck, a seemingly kindly pet shopkeeper who befriends a released convict, Chuck Spillers, (Brian Cox) As the trust between them grows, Blueck asks Spillers to look after the shop whilst he goes away. But Spillers and his wife find that they are trapped by the deviant mind of an ex-Nazi doctor and Blueck’s experiments live on. Directed by Alan Gibson, this episode from the first series was considered the best.

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Samuel Zimmerman
Fangoria.com Managing Editor Samuel Zimmerman has been at FANGORIA since 2009, where fresh out of the Purchase College Cinema Studies program, he began as an editorial assistant. Since, he’s honed both his writing and karaoke skills and been trusted with the responsibility of jury duty at Austin’s incredible Fantastic Fest. Zimmerman lives in and hails from The Bronx, New York where his pants are too tight and he’ll watch anything with witches.
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