Lady Frankenstein ★★★½

A couple of years before his death I did correspond a bit with Mel Welles about Lady Frankenstein (in fact I think Mel may have been the first person I ever emailed). So in order to keep his thoughts about the film in circulation and for anyone who is interested, here is some of what Mel had to say about the film, several of the actors, and the censorship of the film.

“LF was shot in English with a multi-national cast so that it had to be post voiced or dubbed in entirely. It was a big success in Italy and in South America and did reasonable business here. Roger Corman, who distributed in the USA, didn’t feel his audience was mature enough to digest the nudity and explicit sex in a gothic horror film. Incidentally the nudity in the film showed male as well as female. There were no particular anecdotal happenings with Paul Muller, a Swiss actor living in Rome, very strait laced and not particularly colorful outside of his art. Herbert Fuchs was in from Germany and very serious actor, worked hard, and did not interact much with the rest and the cast and crew. Rosalba (Neri) of course, was a love and a close friend as well as the leading lady, so there were many socials, but nothing that falls into the ‘anecdote’ category. Dick Randall had no involvement in the making of the film, he was only involved in the making of the original deal, in that he brought me and the financier of the film together. Hence, a film was wrought. We were friends living in Rome and part of a colony of Americans and Brits living there and working in the European film industry. Dick was an astute film broker, a sharp businessman with a great sense of humour. Chubby, mustachioed with a thin Gilbert Roland one and of shortish stature. The last time we met was at Cannes about 15 years ago. Dick was the embodiment of the exploitation film producer of that era.”