Thursday, October 20, 2016

Watch This: A Bizarre Bela Lugosi Interview from 1932


This 1932 short-subject interview with horror movie legend Bela Lugosi (born on this date in 1882) is staged and rehearsed as you might expect and has some really jarring shifts in tone. One minute he is saying,
"I am studying now American slang. I know how to say "OK", "cat's, uh, whiskers" and "baloney", and "and HOW!" 
We can detect obvious sadness as he talks about being forced to leave his home country of Hungary for political reasons. Then, later, when asked if playing Dracula onstage depressed him, he becomes gloomy and frightening as he intones,
"Very much. It haunted (hunted?) me. I often dreamed of the dead. In the morning when I woke up I was tired and depressed... (trails off)
 Then a jump cut to a cheerful Lugosi asking brightly, "Did you see the play?"

Later, after a flirtatious exchange about the Hollywood party life, Lugosi's brow again darkens and he slips into monologue mode again,
"Well, I guess I'm pretty much of a lone wolf. I don't say I don't like people at all but to tell you the truth I only like them if I get a chance to look deep into their heart and their mind. If I find there is something worthwhile, some human kindness, some sympathy."
Then it gets even stranger and creepier from there.

 

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