Author Topic: Boris Karloff’s costume on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London  (Read 1414 times)

Gillfan

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With recent screenings of “The Bride of Frankenstein,” here is Boris Karloff’s costume from that film currently on display at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. The head is an early Jack Pierce bust of the makeup design for the original “Frankenstein” film. Sara Karloff attended the opening of the exhibit — which salutes the bicentennial of the publication of Mary Shelley’s novel.

Mike Scott

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Way cool! A real piece of horror movie history!
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Anton Phibes

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Universal take note: his jacket is NOT GREEN!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

MrDark1

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The Trail of Frankenstein

Reviving this old thread postings informing you can’t keep a good monster down, or in Britain for that matter.  Seems that the Los Angeles Natural History museum wants their monster back!  They are suing the V/A British museum for the return of the Karloff dummy, created by Jack Pierce, and wearing a Karloff original costume from Bride. 

The LA museum said they loaned it to a Los Angeles Movie Image museum, who lost it in the ‘60s.
I have hated that such a grand piece of our classic horror history resides way ‘across the pond’.  It so deserves to be back to us, and more of a chance for us yanks to see it.

Mike Scott

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. . . who lost it in the ‘60s.

So, what happened between then and whenever it showed up at the British museum?
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Sir Masksalot

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I vaguely recall it going up for auction sometime in the 1980s.

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Dr.Terror

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I hate the way they repainted him.   Made him look like a moldy mushroom.☹
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                                        Bride of Frankenstein - Karloff - Dummy
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Anton Phibes

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He's lovely. Hopefully the pics hang about this time.

MrDark1

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Yes, this figure was originally offered in LAs classified newspaper, available at most grocery store check out counters in the late ‘80s.  An old couple in the Hollywood hills ran the word ad as old Frankenstein prop dummy for sale.  Not much more description, as I saw the original ad then, and regret not going to get it!  It was repainted before being sold then, and has this paint still, the original paint was chipped, and dark greenish if I remember correctly.

I figure the old fellow who sold it was an employee of Universal, or maybe worked for the movie museum of LA.  One lucky fellow showed up early at their house and bought the fig for $150.00
Yes, that price is collect, he later had the fig on view at the early LA autograph, posters, and collectibles show for sale.  It finally sold, and went to England’s small movie museum, where it resided in an odd gage to be looked upon.  I heard that Rick Baker had expressed interest for it and offered $50,000 before it went to Eng.

The small British museum closed a few yrs ago, and sold it to the V/A museum, where our current story begins.  There are photos of Jack Pierce working on this figure.  This is not the photo double head used on a tripod seen with Whale, and Karloff shaking its arm, a different head there.  It is not fully understood what this figure was originally used for, but it wears some of the most iconic pieces of our cherished Classic Horror.

 

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