Ed Wood

Edward Davis Wood Jr. (October 10, 1924 – December 10, 1978) was an American filmmaker, actor, and author.

In the 1950s, Wood made a number of low-budget films in the science fiction, crime and horror genres, intercutting stock footage. In the 1960s and 1970s, he made sexploitation movies and wrote over 80 pulp crime, horror and sex novels. In 1975, he was awarded a Golden Turkey Award as Worst Director of All Time, renewing public interest in his work.[1] Wood's career and camp approach has earned him and his films a cult following.

Following the publication of Rudolph Grey's 1992 oral biography Nightmare of Ecstasy: The Life and Art of Edward D. Wood Jr., the public took a greater interest in Wood, leading up to director Tim Burton's biopic of Wood's life, Ed Wood (1994), a critically acclaimed film starring Johnny Depp as Wood that earned two Academy Awards.

Ed Wood
Ed Wood photo
Edward Davis Wood Jr.

October 10, 1924
DiedDecember 10, 1978 (aged 54)
Los Angeles, California, U.S.
Other namesDaniel Davis, Ann Gora, Edward D. Wood Jr., Adkov Telmig
OccupationFilmmaker, author, actor
Years active1947–1978
Norma McCarty (m. 1955–1956)
Kathy O'Hara (m. 1959–1978)
Military career
AllegianceUnited States
Service/branchUnited States Marine Corps
Years of service1942–46
Battles/warsWorld War II:

Early years

Wood's father, Edward Sr., worked for the U.S. Postal Service as a custodian, and his family relocated numerous times around the United States. Eventually, they settled in Poughkeepsie, New York, where Ed Wood Jr. was born in 1924. According to Wood's second wife, Kathy O'Hara, Wood's mother Lillian would dress him in girl's clothing when he was a child because she had always wanted a daughter.[2] For the rest of his life, Wood crossdressed, infatuated with the feel of Angora on his skin.[3][4]

During his childhood, Wood was interested in the performing arts and pulp fiction. He collected comics and pulp magazines, and adored movies, most notably Westerns, serials, and anything involving the occult. Buck Jones and Bela Lugosi were two of his earliest childhood idols. He would often skip school in favor of watching pictures at the local movie theater, where stills from the day's movie would often be thrown in the trash by theater staff, allowing Wood to salvage them to add to his extensive collection.

On his 12th birthday, in 1936, Wood received as a gift his first movie camera, a Kodak "Cine Special". One of his first pieces of footage, and one that imbued him with pride, showed the airship Hindenburg passing over the Hudson River at Poughkeepsie, shortly before its historic crash at Lakehurst, New Jersey. One of Wood's first paid jobs was as a cinema usher, and he also sang and played drums in a band. He later fronted a singing quartet called "Eddie Wood's Little Splinters", having learned to play a variety of string instruments.

Military service

In 1942, Wood enlisted in the United States Marine Corps, just months after the attack on Pearl Harbor. Assigned to the 2nd Defense Battalions, he reached the rank of corporal before he was discharged. He was involved in the Battle of Tarawa, among others, and during the entire war, he lost his two front teeth to a Japanese soldier's rifle butt and was shot several times in the leg by a Japanese machine gunner (as shown in The Unknown War of Edward D. Wood Jr.: 1942–1946 by James Pontolillo). Wood later claimed that he feared being wounded in battle more than he feared being killed, mainly because he was afraid a combat medic would discover his secret due to wearing a bra and panties under his uniform during the Battle of Tarawa.


Directing and screenwriting

In 1947, Wood moved to Hollywood, California, where he wrote scripts and directed television pilots, commercials and several forgotten micro-budget westerns with names such as Crossroads of Laredo and Crossroad Avenger: The Legend of the Tucson Kid. In 1948, Wood wrote, produced, directed, and starred in Casual Company, a play derived from his unpublished novel, which was based on his service in the United States Marine Corps. It opened at the Village Playhouse to negative reviews on October 25.[5]

In 1952, Wood was introduced to actor Bela Lugosi by friend and fellow writer-producer Alex Gordon, Wood's roommate at the time, who went on to help create American International Pictures. Lugosi's son, Bela Lugosi Jr., has been among those who felt Wood exploited the senior Lugosi's stardom, taking advantage of the fading actor when he could not refuse any work,[6] while most documents and interviews with other Wood associates in Nightmare of Ecstasy suggest that Wood and Lugosi were genuine friends and that Wood helped Lugosi through the worst days of his depression and addiction. Lugosi had become dependent on morphine as a way of controlling his debilitating sciatica over the years, and was in a horrendous physical state.[7]

Wood billed himself under a number of different pseudonyms, including Ann Gora (in reference to Angora, his favorite female textile) and Akdov Telmig (the backwards form of his favorite drink, the vodka gimlet).

Glen or Glenda

In 1953 Wood wrote and directed the semi-documentary film Glen or Glenda (originally titled I Changed My Sex!) with producer George Weiss. The film starred Wood (under the alias "Daniel Davis"), his girlfriend Dolores Fuller, and Lugosi (in voiceover) as the god-like narrator.

Jail Bait

In 1954, Wood directed and produced a crime film, Jail Bait (originally titled The Hidden Face), along with co-writer Alex Gordon, which starred Lyle Talbot and Steve Reeves (in one of his first acting jobs). Bela Lugosi was supposed to play the lead role of the plastic surgeon, but was busy working on another film project when filming started and had to bow out.

Bride of the Monster

In 1955 Wood produced and directed the horror film Bride of the Monster (originally titled Bride of the Atom), based on an original story idea by Alex Gordon which he called The Atomic Monster.[8] It starred Bela Lugosi, Swedish wrestler Tor Johnson, and Loretta King.

Plan 9 from Outer Space

In 1956 Wood produced, wrote, and directed the science fiction film Plan 9 from Outer Space (originally titled Grave Robbers from Outer Space), which starred Lugosi (in his final film role; Lugosi died during production), Tor Johnson, Vampira (Maila Nurmi), Tom Mason (who doubled for Lugosi in several scenes), and the Amazing Criswell as the film's narrator. Plan 9 premiered (as Grave Robbers) at a very small screening in 1957, was only released theatrically under the title Plan Nine from Outer Space in 1959, and was finally sold to late night television in 1961, thereby finding its audience over the years.

It became Wood's best-known film and received a cult following after 1980, when Michael Medved declared this film "the worst film ever made" in his book The Golden Turkey Awards.

The Violent Years

In 1956 Wood wrote and produced the film The Violent Years (originally titled Teenage Girl Gang) with director William M. Morgan, starring Playboy model Jean Moorhead.

Night of the Ghouls

In 1958 Wood wrote, produced, and directed Night of the Ghouls (originally titled Revenge of the Dead), starring Kenne Duncan, Tor Johnson (as "Lobo" from Bride of the Monster), Criswell, Duke Moore, and Valda Hansen. The film may have been released marginally in March 1959, and then promptly vanished from sight for nearly three decades. For many years, it was thought to be a lost film but it was rediscovered and finally released on home video in 1984. (In 1958, Wood also co-wrote the screenplay for The Bride and the Beast (1958), which was directed by Adrian Weiss.)

The Sinister Urge

In 1960,[9] Wood wrote and directed the exploitation film The Sinister Urge (originally titled Racket Queen), starring Kenne Duncan, Duke Moore, and Carl Anthony. Filmed in just five days, this is the last mainstream film Wood directed, although it has grindhouse elements. The film contains an "eerily prescient"[10] scene, in which Carl Anthony's character states, "I look at this slush, and I try to remember, at one time, I made good movies".

The scenes of teenagers at a pizza place had been shot in 1956 for Wood's unfinished juvenile delinquency film Rock and Roll Hell (a.k.a. Hellborn)

Orgy of the Dead

In 1963 Wood wrote the screenplay for Shotgun Wedding (an exploitation film about hillbillies marrying child brides) and his 1965 transitional film Orgy of the Dead (originally titled Nudie Ghoulies), combining the horror and grindhouse skin-flick genres. Wood handled various production details while Stephen C. Apostolof directed under the pseudonym A. C. Stephen. The film begins with a recreation of the opening scene from the then-unreleased Night of the Ghouls. Criswell, wearing one of Lugosi's old capes, rises from his coffin to deliver an introduction taken almost word-for-word from the previous film. Set in a misty graveyard, the Lord of the Dead (Criswell) and his sexy consort, the Black Ghoul (a Vampira look-alike), preside over a series of macabre performances by topless dancers from beyond the grave (recruited by Wood from local strip clubs). The film also features a Wolf Man and a Mummy. Together, Wood and Apostolof went on to make a string of sexploitation films up to 1977. Wood co-wrote the screenplays and occasionally acted. Venus Flytrap (1970) aka The Revenge of Dr. X, a US/Japan horror film, was based on an unproduced Ed Wood screenplay from the 1950s.[11]


In 1969, Wood appeared in The Photographer (a.k.a. Love Feast or Pretty Models All in a Row), the first of two films produced by a Marine buddy, Joseph F. Robertson, portraying a photographer using his position to engage in sexual antics with models. He had a smaller role in Robertson's second film, Mrs. Stone's Thing, as a transvestite who spends his time at a party trying on lingerie in a bedroom.

In 1970, Wood made his own pornographic film, Take It Out in Trade. The following year, he produced, wrote, and directed Necromania (sometimes subtitled A Tale of Weird Love) under the pseudonym "Don Miller". The film was an early entry to the new subgenre of hardcore pornographic film. Thought lost for years, it resurfaced in edited form on Mike Vraney's Something Weird imprint in the late 1980s, then was re-released on DVD by Fleshbot Films in 2005.

Throughout the 1970s, Wood worked with friend Stephen C. Apostolof, usually co-writing scripts, but also serving as an assistant director and associate producer. (Together they had made Wood's Orgy of the Dead in 1965.) His last known on-screen appearance was in Apostolof's Fugitive Girls (a.k.a. Five Loose Women) in 1974, where he played both a gas station attendant called "Pops" and a sheriff on the women's trail.

Books and novels

Beginning in the early 1960s up until his death, Wood wrote at least 80 lurid crime and sex novels in addition to hundreds of short stories and non-fiction pieces for magazines and daily newspapers. Thirty-two stories known to be written by Wood (he sometimes wrote under pseudonyms such as "Ann Gora" and "Dr. T.K. Peters") are collected in Blood Splatters Quickly, published by OR Books in 2014. Novels include Black Lace Drag (1963) (reissued in 1965 as Killer in Drag), Orgy of the Dead (1965), Devil Girls (1967), Death of a Transvestite (1967), The Sexecutives (1968), The Photographer (1969), Take It Out in Trade (1970), The Only House in Town (1970), Necromania (1971), The Undergraduate (1972), A Study of Fetishes and Fantasies (1973) and Fugitive Girls (1974).

In Nightmare of Ecstasy, Maila Nurmi said she declined Wood's offer to do a nude scene sitting in a coffin for the film version of his Necromania, claiming she was recovering from a major stroke at the time.[12]

In 1965, Wood wrote the quasi-memoir Hollywood Rat Race, which was eventually published in 1998. In it, Wood advises new writers to "just keep on writing. Even if your story gets worse, you'll get better", and also recounts tales of dubious authenticity, such as how he and Bela Lugosi entered the world of nightclub cabaret.

Personal life

Relationships and marriages

Wood had a long-term relationship with actress and songwriter Dolores Fuller, whom he met in late 1952. The two lived together for a time and Wood cast Fuller in three of his films: Glen or Glenda, Jail Bait, and Bride of the Monster. Fuller later said she initially had no idea that Wood was a crossdresser and was mortified when she saw Wood dressed as a woman in Glen or Glenda. The couple broke up in 1955 after Wood cast another actress in the lead role of Bride of the Monster (Wood originally wrote the part for Fuller and reduced her part to a 1-minute cameo) and because of Wood's excessive drinking.[13]

While making Bride of the Monster in late 1955, Wood married Norma McCarty. McCarty appeared as Edie, the airplane stewardess in Plan 9 from Outer Space. The marriage was annulled in 1956.[14]

Wood married his second wife, Kathy O'Hara, in 1959. They remained married until Wood's death in 1978.[15] Kathy died on June 26, 2006, having never remarried.[15]


In Wood's 1992 biography Nightmare of Ecstasy: The Life and Art of Edward D. Wood Jr., Wood's wife Kathy recalls that Wood told her that his mother dressed him in girls' clothing as a child.[2] Kathy stated that Wood's transvestism was not a sexual inclination, but rather a neomaternal comfort derived mainly from angora fabric (angora is featured in many of Wood's films).[16] Even in his later years, Wood was not shy about going out in public dressed in drag as Shirley, his female alter ego (who also appeared in many of his screenplays and stories).[17]


By 1978, Wood's depression had worsened, and he and his wife Kathy had both become alcoholics. They were evicted from their Hollywood apartment on Yucca Street on Thursday, December 7, 1978 in total poverty. The couple moved into the North Hollywood apartment of their friend, actor Peter Coe. Wood spent the weekend drinking vodka. Around noon on Sunday, December 10, Wood felt ill and went to lie down in Coe's bedroom. From the bedroom, he asked Kathy to bring him a drink, which she refused to do. A few minutes later he yelled out, "Kathy, I can't breathe!", a plea Kathy ignored as she later said she was tired of Wood bossing her around. After hearing no movement in the bedroom for 20 minutes, Kathy sent a friend to check on Wood, who discovered him dead from a heart attack. Kathy later said, "I still remember when I went into that room that afternoon and he was dead, his eyes and mouth were wide open. I'll never forget the look in his eyes. He clutched at the sheets. It looked like he'd seen hell".[18]

Wood was cremated, and his ashes were scattered at sea.[19]

Legacy and homages

In 1986 in an essay paying homage to Wood in Incredibly Strange Films, Jim Morton wrote: "Eccentric and individualistic, Edward D. Wood Jr. was a man born to film. Lesser men, if forced to make movies under the conditions Wood faced, would have thrown up their hands in defeat".[20]

In 1994 director Tim Burton released the biopic Ed Wood, starring Johnny Depp in the title role and Martin Landau, who won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Bela Lugosi. It also won an Academy Award for Best Makeup for Rick Baker. Conrad Brooks appeared in the movie, in a cameo role of Barman. The film received mass critical acclaim, but did poorly at the box office. It has since developed a cult following.

In 1996 Reverend Steve Galindo of Seminole, Oklahoma, created a legally recognized religion with Wood as its official savior.[21] Founded as a joke, the Church of Ed Wood now boasts more than 3,500 baptized followers. Woodites, as Steve's followers are called, celebrate "Woodmas" on October 10, which is Ed's birthday. Numerous parties and concerts are held worldwide to celebrate Woodmas. On October 4[22]–5, 2003,[23] horror host Mr. Lobo was canonized as the "Patron Saint of late night movie hosts and insomniacs" in the Church of Ed Wood.[22][23]

In 1997 the University of Southern California began holding an annual Ed Wood Film Festival, in which student teams are challenged to write, film, and edit an Ed Wood-inspired short film based on a preassigned theme. Past themes have included Rebel Without a Bra (2004), What's That in Your Pocket? (2005), and Slippery When Wet (2006).[24]

In popular culture

From 1993 to 1994, three of Wood's films (Bride of the Monster, The Violent Years, and The Sinister Urge) were featured on the television series Mystery Science Theater 3000, which gave those works wider exposure. Producers of MST3K considered including Plan 9, but found it had too much dialogue for the show's format.

In 1998, Wood's previously unfilmed script I Woke Up Early the Day I Died was finally produced, starring Billy Zane and Christina Ricci, with appearances by Tippi Hedren, Bud Cort, Sandra Bernhard, Karen Black, John Ritter and many others. Outside of a brief New York theatrical engagement, the film did not receive a commercial release in the United States, and was only available on video in Germany due to contractual difficulties.

In 2001, horror film director and heavy metal musician Rob Zombie released The Sinister Urge, which is titled after Wood's film.

In 2002, American horror-punk supergroup Murderdolls released the album Beyond the Valley of the Murderdolls, which features the single "Dead in Hollywood" and makes a reference to Wood with the lyrics, "You can knock on Ed Wood, but it won't do you no good/Cause all of my heroes are dead in Hollywood."

In 2005, the Plan 9 cast were lampooned in an episode of the television series Deadly Cinema; the following year, clips of this episode were featured in the documentary Vampira: The Movie.[25]

In 2006, MST3K head writer and host Michael J. Nelson recorded an audio commentary track for a DVD release of a colorized version of Plan 9 from Outer Space.[26] In 2009, Nelson and fellow MST3K alums Kevin Murphy and Bill Corbett mocked Plan 9 again in their very first RiffTrax Live event, coinciding with the film's 50th anniversary.

In 2012, director John Johnson announced plans to film a remake of Plan 9 From Outer Space, released straight-to-DVD in 2015.

In 2017 "Dreamer- the Ed Wood musical" was produced by award-winning composer Rick Tell.


  • Flying Saucers Over Hollywood: The Plan 9 Companion, was released in 1992. This exhaustive two-hour documentary by Mark Patrick Carducci chronicles the making of Plan 9 from Outer Space and features interviews with Maila Nurmi (Vampira), Paul Marco, Conrad Brooks, et al. In 2000, Image Entertainment included the documentary on the DVD reissue of Plan 9 from Outer Space (in a two-disc set with Robot Monster).
  • Ed Wood: Look Back in Angora, released in 1994 by Rhino Home Video, is a one-hour documentary on Wood's life and films. This includes rare outtakes and interviews with Dolores Fuller, Kathy Wood, Stephen Apostolof, and Conrad Brooks. Gary Owens narrates; Ted Newsom wrote and directed.
  • The Haunted World of Edward D. Wood Jr., written and directed by Brett Thompson, came out in 1995. This documentary about the life and films of Ed Wood features interviews with Wood's friends and co-workers and closely resembles Wood's own style, albeit with slightly better miniatures.
  • The Incredibly Strange Film Show presented by Jonathan Ross.

Lost films

Wood's 1972 film The Undergraduate is considered to be a lost film, as was his 1970 film Take It Out in Trade. An 80-minute print of Take It Out In Trade was later discovered and publicly exhibited at Anthology Film Archives in New York City in September 2014.[27][28] Silent outtakes from the film were released by Something Weird Video.[1]

Wood's 1971 film Necromania was also believed lost for years, until an edited version resurfaced, at a yard sale in 1992, followed by a complete unedited print in 2001. A complete print of the previously lost Wood pornographic film, The Young Marrieds, was discovered in 2004. It was released as a part of the four DVD set, The Lost Sex Films of Ed Wood Jr., by Alpha Blue Archives in July 2014.[28]



Glen or
Jail Bait Bride of
the Monster
Plan 9 from
Outer Space
Night of
the Ghouls
Take It Out
in Trade
Crossroads of
Carl Anthony
Conrad Brooks
Kenne Duncan
Harvey B. Dunn
Timothy Farrell
Dolores Fuller
Tor Johnson
Tom Keene
Bela Lugosi
Dudley Manlove
Paul Marco
Tom Mason
Duke Moore
Bud Osborne
Lyle Talbot
Ed Wood

See also


  1. ^ a b Craig 2009, p. 276.
  2. ^ a b Grey 1994, p. 16.
  3. ^ Benshoff 1997, p. 157.
  4. ^ Weaver 2004, p. 358.
  5. ^ Grey 1994, pp. 23–24.
  6. ^ Thompson, Brett (1996). The Haunted World of Edward D. Wood Jr (Documentary). Wood-Thomas Pictures.
  7. ^ "10 Absurd Facts About the Worst Director of All Time". Retrieved 2016-08-14.
  8. ^ "Alex Gordon". Autry.com. Retrieved November 9, 2013.
  9. ^ Craig, Rob (2009), "The Sinister Urge (1960)", Ed Wood, Mad Genius: A Critical Study of the Films, McFarland & Company, ISBN 978-0786454235
  10. ^ Craig 2009, p. 208.
  11. ^ Weldon 1996, p. 464.
  12. ^ Grey 1994, p. 135.
  13. ^ McLellan, Dennis (May 11, 2011). "Dolores Fuller dies at 88; actress dated director Ed Wood". latimes.com. Retrieved June 4, 2013.
  14. ^ Holman, Jordyn (August 18, 2014). "Norma McCarty, Actress and Wife of Ed Wood, Dies at 93". variety.com. Retrieved March 3, 2015.
  15. ^ a b "Kathy Wood". Variety. July 16, 2006. Retrieved September 25, 2011.
  16. ^ Grey 1994, p. 141.
  17. ^ Craig 2009, p. 108.
  18. ^ Ford 1999, p. 81.
  19. ^ Grey 1994, p. 160.
  20. ^ Morton 1986, p. 158.
  21. ^ "Oh My God?: God Is the Producer of Our Lives But We Are the Directors". Huffpost Entertainment. November 18, 2009.
  22. ^ a b "ABOUT MR. LOBO". Cinema Insomnia. Archived from the original on March 28, 2010. Retrieved July 20, 2010.
  23. ^ a b Reverend Steve Galindo (December 23, 2003). "Lesson 19: The First Saints of Woodism". Church of Ed Wood. Retrieved July 20, 2010.
  24. ^ "USC Events Calendar". Web-app.usc.edu. Archived from the original on December 15, 2012. Retrieved November 9, 2013.
  25. ^ "Cast of Vampira: The Movie". Vampirathemovie.com. Retrieved November 9, 2013.
  26. ^ "Plan 9 from Outer Space: In Color (with Mike Nelson Commentary) : DVD Talk Review of the DVD Video". Dvdtalk.com. Retrieved November 9, 2013.
  27. ^ "Film Screenings/Film Calendar (September 2014)". anthologyfilmarchives.org.
  28. ^ a b Piepenburg, Erik (August 28, 2014). "Wild Rides to Inner Space". nytimes.com. Retrieved March 3, 2015.


  • Benshoff, Harry M. (1997). Monsters in the Closet: Homosexuality and the Horror Film. Manchester University Press. ISBN 0-7190-4473-1.
  • Craig, Rob (2009). Ed Wood, Mad Genius: A Critical Study of the Films. McFarland. ISBN 0-7864-5423-7.
  • Ford, Luke (1999). A History of X: 100 Years of Sex in Film. Prometheus Books. ISBN 1-61592-631-3.
  • Gerstner, David A., ed. (2006). Routledge International Encyclopedia of Queer Culture. Routledge. ISBN 0-415-30651-5.
  • Grey, Rudolph (1994). Nightmare Of Ecstasy: The Life and Art Of Edward D. Wood Jr. Feral House. ISBN 0-922915-24-5.
  • Hoberman, J.; Rosenbaum, Jonathan (2009). Midnight Movies. Basic Books. ISBN 0-7867-4700-5.
  • Morton, Jim (1986). Juno, Andrea; Vale, V., eds. Incredibly Strange Films (1 ed.). San Francisco, California: RE/Search. ISBN 0-940642-09-3.
  • Weaver, Tom, ed. (2004). It Came From Horrorwood: Interviews With Moviemakers In The Science Fiction And Horror Tradition. McFarland. ISBN 0-7864-2069-3.
  • Weldon, Michael (1996). The Psychotronic Video Guide. Titan Books. ISBN 1-85286-770-1.

Further reading

  • Conway, Rob (2009). Ed Wood, Mad Genius: A Critical Study of the Films. McFarland. ISBN 978-0-7864-3955-3.
  • Medved, Harry and Michael (1975). The Golden Turkey Awards. Perigree Books. ISBN 0-399-50463-X. p. 168, 169, 176-181, 204-208, 211, 217

External links

21st Saturn Awards

The 21st Saturn Awards, honoring the best in science fiction, fantasy and horror film and television in 1994, was held on June 26, 1995.

Below is a complete list of nominees and winners. Winners are highlighted in boldface.

67th Academy Awards

The 67th Academy Awards ceremony, organized by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) took place on March 27, 1995, at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles beginning at 6:00 p.m. PST / 9:00 p.m. EST. During the ceremony, AMPAS presented Academy Awards (commonly referred to as the Oscars) in 23 categories honoring the films released in 1994. The ceremony, televised in the United States by ABC, was produced by Gilbert Cates and directed by Jeff Margolis. Comedian David Letterman hosted the show for the first time. Three weeks earlier in a ceremony held at the Regent Beverly Wilshire Hotel in Beverly Hills, California on March 4, the Academy Awards for Technical Achievement were presented by host Jamie Lee Curtis.Forrest Gump won six awards, including Best Picture. Other winners included Ed Wood, The Lion King, and Speed with two awards, and The Adventures of Priscilla, Queen of the Desert, Blue Sky, Bob's Birthday, Bullets over Broadway, Burnt by the Sun, Franz Kafka's It's a Wonderful Life, Legends of the Fall, The Madness of King George, Maya Lin: A Strong Clear Vision, Pulp Fiction, A Time for Justice and Trevor with one. The telecast garnered more than 48 million viewers in the United States, making it the most watched Oscars telecast since the 55th Academy Awards in 1983.

Bela Lugosi

Béla Ferenc Dezső Blaskó (Hungarian: [ˈbeːlɒ ˈfɛrɛnt͡s ˈdɛʒøː ˈblɒʃkoː]; 20 October 1882 – 16 August 1956), better known as Bela Lugosi (; Hungarian: [ˈluɡoʃi]), was a Hungarian-American actor famous for portraying Count Dracula in the 1931 film and for his roles in other horror films.After playing small parts on the stage in his native Hungary, Lugosi got his first role in a film in 1917. He had to leave the country after the failed Hungarian Communist Revolution of 1919 because of his socialist activism. He acted in several films in Weimar Germany before arriving in the United States as a seaman on a merchant ship.

In 1927, he appeared as Count Dracula in a Broadway adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel. He later appeared in the classic 1931 film Dracula by Universal Pictures. Through the 1930s, he occupied an important niche in popular horror films, with their East European setting, but his Hungarian accent limited his repertoire, and he tried unsuccessfully to avoid typecasting.

Meanwhile, he was often paired with Boris Karloff, who was able to demand top billing. To his frustration, Lugosi, a charter member of the American Screen Actors Guild, was increasingly restricted to minor parts, kept employed by the studio principally so that they could put his name on the posters. Among his pairings with Karloff, he performed major roles only in The Black Cat (1934), The Raven (1935), and Son of Frankenstein (1939); even in The Raven, Karloff received top billing despite Lugosi performing the lead role. By this time, Lugosi had been receiving regular medication for sciatic neuritis, and he became addicted to morphine and methadone. This drug dependence was noted by producers, and the offers eventually dwindled to a few parts in Ed Wood's low-budget films—most notably Plan 9 from Outer Space. Lugosi, who was married five times and had one son, Bela George, died of a heart attack on August 16, 1956.

Biographical film

A biographical film, or biopic (; abbreviation for biographical motion picture), is a film that dramatizes the life of a non-fictional or historically-based person or people. Such films show the life of a historical person and the central character's real name is used. They differ from films "based on a true story" or "historical drama films" in that they attempt to comprehensively tell a single person's life story or at least the most historically important years of their lives.Because the figures portrayed are actual people, whose actions and characteristics are known to the public (or at least historically documented), biopic roles are considered some of the most demanding of actors and actresses. Ben Kingsley, Johnny Depp, Jim Carrey, and Jamie Foxx all gained new-found respect as dramatic actors after starring in biopics: Ben Kingsley as Mahatma Gandhi in Gandhi (1982), Depp as Ed Wood in Ed Wood (1994), Carrey as Andy Kaufman in Man on the Moon (1999), Foxx as Ray Charles in Ray (2004), and Eddie Redmayne as Stephen Hawking in The Theory of Everything (2014).

In rare cases, sometimes called auto biopics, the subject of the film plays himself or herself: Jackie Robinson in The Jackie Robinson Story; Muhammad Ali in The Greatest; Audie Murphy in To Hell and Back; Patty Duke in Call Me Anna; Bob Mathias in The Bob Mathias Story, Arlo Guthrie in Alice's Restaurant; Fantasia Barrino in Life Is Not a Fairytale; and Howard Stern in Private Parts.

Biopic scholars include George F. Custen of the College of Staten Island and Dennis P. Bingham of Indiana University – Purdue University Indianapolis. Custen, in Bio/Pics: How Hollywood Constructed Public History (1992), regards the genre as having died with the Hollywood studio era, and in particular, Darryl F. Zanuck. On the other hand, Bingham's 2010 study Whose Lives Are They Anyway? The Biopic as Contemporary Film Genre shows how it perpetuates as a codified genre using many of the same tropes used in the studio era that has followed a similar trajectory as that shown by Rick Altman in his study, Film/Genre. Bingham also addresses the male biopic and the female biopic as distinct genres from each other, the former generally dealing with great accomplishments, the latter generally dealing with female victimization. Ellen Cheshire's Bio-Pics: a life in pictures (2014) examines UK/US films from the 1990s and 2000s. Each chapter reviews key films linked by profession and concludes with further viewing list. Christopher Robé has also written on the gender norms that underlie the biopic in his article, "Taking Hollywood Back" in the 2009 issue of Cinema Journal. Roger Ebert defended The Hurricane and distortions in biographical films in general, stating "those who seek the truth about a man from the film of his life might as well seek it from his loving grandmother. ... The Hurricane is not a documentary but a parable." Some biopics purposely stretch the truth. Confessions of a Dangerous Mind was based on game show host Chuck Barris' widely debunked yet popular memoir of the same name, in which he claimed to be a CIA agent. Kafka incorporated both the life of author Franz Kafka and the surreal aspects of his fiction. The Errol Flynn film They Died with Their Boots On tells the story of Custer but is highly romanticized. The Oliver Stone film The Doors, mainly about Jim Morrison, was highly praised for the similarities between Jim Morrison and actor Val Kilmer, look-wise and singing-wise, but fans and band members did not like the way Val Kilmer portrayed Jim Morrison, and a few of the scenes were even completely made up.Casting can be controversial for biographical films. Casting is often a balance between similarity in looks and ability to portray the characteristics of the person. Anthony Hopkins felt that he should not have played Richard Nixon in Nixon because of a lack of resemblance between the two. The casting of John Wayne as Genghis Khan in The Conqueror was objected to because of the American Wayne being cast as the Mongol warlord. Egyptian critics criticized the casting of Louis Gossett, Jr., an African American actor, as Egyptian president Anwar Sadat in the 1982 TV miniseries Sadat. Also, some objected to the casting of Jennifer Lopez in Selena because she is a New York City native of Puerto Rican descent while Selena was Mexican-American.The musical biopic Bohemian Rhapsody, based on the life of Queen singer Freddie Mercury, became the highest-grossing biopic of all time in 2018.

Bride of the Monster

Bride of the Monster is a 1955 American science fiction horror film directed, written, and produced by Edward D. Wood Jr., and starring Bela Lugosi, along with Tor Johnson, Tony McCoy and Loretta King.

The film is considered to have Wood's biggest budget ($70,000). Production commenced in 1953 but, due to further financial problems, was not completed until 1955. It was released in May of 1955, initially on a double bill with Macumba.

A sequel, entitled Night of the Ghouls, was finished in 1959, but due to last-minute financial problems, was not released until 1984.

Ed Wood (engineer)

Peter Edwin "Ed" Wood (born March 1, 1968) is the former the Chief Designer for the Williams Formula One team.

Ed Wood (film)

Ed Wood is a 1994 American biographical comedy-drama film directed and produced by Tim Burton and starring Johnny Depp as the eponymous cult filmmaker. The film concerns the period in Wood's life when he made his best-known films as well as his relationship with actor Bela Lugosi, played by Martin Landau. Sarah Jessica Parker, Patricia Arquette, Jeffrey Jones, Lisa Marie, and Bill Murray are among the supporting cast.

The film was conceived by writers Scott Alexander and Larry Karaszewski when they were students at the USC School of Cinematic Arts. Irritated at being thought of solely as writers for family films with their work on Problem Child and its sequel, Alexander and Karaszewski struck a deal with Burton and Denise Di Novi to produce the Ed Wood biopic, and Michael Lehmann as director. Due to scheduling conflicts with Airheads, Lehmann had to vacate the director's position, which was taken over by Burton.

Ed Wood was originally in development at Columbia Pictures, but the studio put the film in "turnaround" over Burton's decision to shoot in black-and-white. Ed Wood was taken to the Walt Disney Studios, which produced the film through the studio's Touchstone Pictures division. The film was released to critical acclaim, but was a box office bomb, making only $5.9 million against an $18 million budget. It won two Academy Awards: Best Supporting Actor for Landau and Best Makeup for Rick Baker (who designed Landau's prosthetic makeup), Ve Neill and Yolanda Toussieng.

Ed Wood bibliography

This is a list of the books of Edward D. Wood, Jr..

Black Lace Drag (1963). Also known as Killer in Drag (from 1965)--as well as Blacklace Drag, The Twilight Land, Homosexual Generation, and translated as La Drag Asesina—this most famous Wood novel sees Glen from ‘Glen or Glenda’ working as a transvestite assassin. [Correction: There is no correlation between this novel and the film Glen or Glenda save for the similarity of a man named Glen whose transvestite alter ego's name is Glenda.] By day he is normal, ordinary Glen Marker and by night he dons the angora in order to become his ruthless killer alter ego, Glenda Satin. When Glen suspects he has been set up by his bosses, he goes on the run and winds up joining a carnival. This is probably one of Wood’s better novels and certainly one of the most iconic. There is a character in this novel called Dalton Van Carter who appears to be based upon the real-life film director, William Desmond Taylor.

Orgy of the Dead (1966). This novel was released after the movie of the same title but was actually written prior to it. It also features sequences from other Wood movies including ‘The Night the Banshee Cried’.

Parisian Passions (1966). This story involves a transvestite cop investigating the strangling of a number of Paris strippers. The pseudonym on the cover reads ‘J. X. Williams’ although in a printing error, Wood’s name appears on the inside title page.

Watts...The Difference (1966). AKA Burn, Baby, Burn. A series of flashbacks as a Hollywood cowboy actor and his lover reminisce. While not a transvestite-themed novel, one of the main characters does have an angora fetish.

Sideshow Siren (1966). AKA Naked Bones. A carnival freak escapes a sideshow and a series of gruesome murders ensue.

Drag Trade (1967). A story about a psychologically damaged male character who was made to wear pink dresses as a child. Ed Wood actually appears in drag on the cover of this book.

Bloodiest sex crimes of history (1967). His first non-fiction book is written under the pseudonym of ‘Spenser and West’ and details real-life stories of vampirism and cannibalism.

Security Risk (1967).

Watts...After (1967). Sequel to Watts...The Difference.

Devil Girls (1967).

It Takes One to Know One (1967).

Death of a Transvestite (1967). Also known as Let Me Die in Drag and Hollywood Drag. This is the sequel novel to 1963’s ‘Black Lace Drag’ and sees Glen Marker on death row. He requests to die in drag. The story is mostly told through documents such as police reports. As with ‘Drag Trade’, Ed Wood features in drag on the cover of some versions of this novel although his anonymity is maintained by a black bar positioned across his eyes. It is sometimes published under the pseudonym of ‘Woodrow Edwards’.

Suburbia Confidential (1967).

Nighttime Lez (1968). Tales of sexual experimentation.

Raped in the Grass (1968). This brutal pornographic novel depicts two young American girls being tortured and raped by rogue Native Americans. It is accompanied by black and white photographs, allegedly taken from a movie of the same title. However, no such movie has ever been found. Raped in the Grass is probably the most outrageous Wood story.

Bye Bye Broadie (1968). Also contains photographs supposedly from a film, copies of which have yet to surface.

The Perverts (1968). Just about every sexual fetish and depravity imaginable can be found in this novel published under the name ‘Jason Nichols‘.

The Gay Underworld (1968).

Sex, Shrouds and Caskets (1968).

The Sexecutives (1968).

Sex Museum (1968).

The Love of the Dead (1968).

One, Two, Three (1968).

Hell Chicks (1968).

Purple Thighs (1968). AKA Lost Souls Delivered. An ill-informed story about the sexual freedom of hippies. Also titled ‘Lost Souls Delivered’.

Carnival Piece (1969).

Toni: Black Tigress (1969).

Mama’s Diary (1969).

Hollywood Rat Race (1960s). Throughout the sixties, Wood worked on a quasi-memoir detailing the zeitgeist of Hollywood in the sixties. The book also has elements of advice for those trying to establish themselves in show business. Never published at the time, it was first published in the 1990s.

To Make a Homo (1971).

Black Myth (1971).

A Study of the Sons and Daughters of Erotica (1971). A treatise on deviant sexuality, including a quote or two from Criswell. Plugs Glen or Glenda and the then forthcoming A Study of Sexual Practices in Witchcraft and Black Magic, Book Two (1971).

A Study of Sexual Practices in Witchcraft and Black Magic, Book Two (1971).

The Sexual Woman: Book 2 (1971).

The Sexual Man: Book 2 (1971).Mary-Go-Round (1972).

The Only House (1972). This is the novel version of Ed Wood’s movie, ‘Necromania’.

A Study of Fetishes and Fantasies (1973).

A Study in the Motivation of Censorship, Sex and the Movies, Book 1 (1973).

A Study in the Motivation of Censorship, Sex and the Movies, Book 2 (1973).

Tales for a Sexy Night, Vol. 1 (1973).

Tales for a Sexy Night, Vol. 2 (1973).

Outlaws of the Old West (1973). Wood has one non-fiction short in this compilation: "Pearl Hart and the last stage."

Diary of a Transvestite Hooker, The (1973).

Forced Entry (1974).

TV Lust (1977) A thinly veiled account for Wood's Lonnie Anderson fetish.Possible works:

The Adult Version of Dracula;

And He Rode All Night;

Black Sexual Habits and Techniques;

Everybody Does It;

The Erotic Spy;

For Love or Money;

Gay Black;

The Greek Connection;

Hollywood Sex Book;

Lesbian Wife Swapping;

Male Wives;

Mask of Evil;

Offbeat Orgies;

The Oralists;

Pleasure Dorm;

The Producer;

Riot, Rape & Revelry;

Saving Grace: The Last Lash;

Sex Life of the Alcoholic;

The Sexual Man, Book II;

The Sexual Woman, Book II;

The Skin Flick;

Strange Sisters;

A Study of Stag Films;

The Svengali of Sex;

Swedish House;


The Transsexual;

The Trouble With ---?;

Young, Black and Gay

George Steele

William James Myers (April 16, 1937 – February 16, 2017), better known by his ring name George "The Animal" Steele, was an American professional wrestler, school teacher, author, and actor. His career lasted from 1967 until 1988, though he made occasional wrestling appearances into the 1990s and 2000s.

Steele portrayed Swedish wrestler and actor Tor Johnson in Tim Burton's film Ed Wood.

Glen or Glenda

Glen or Glenda is a 1953 American drama film written, directed by and starring Ed Wood (credited in his starring role as "Daniel Davis"), and featuring Bela Lugosi and Wood's then-girlfriend Dolores Fuller. It was produced by George Weiss who also made the exploitation film Test Tube Babies that same year.

The film is a docudrama about cross-dressing and transsexuality, and is semi-autobiographical in nature. Wood himself was a cross-dresser, and the film is a plea for tolerance. It is widely considered one of the worst films ever. However, it has become a cult film due to its low-budget production values and idiosyncratic style.

Jail Bait (1954 film)

Jail Bait (also known as Hidden Face) is a 1954 American film noir directed by Ed Wood, with a screenplay by Wood and Alex Gordon. The film stars Clancy Malone as the delinquent son of a famous doctor, and his involvement with a dangerous criminal. Famed bodybuilder Steve Reeves made his first major screen appearance in the film, and it was one of the few films he made using his own voice (most of the films he made thereafter in Italy were dubbed in post production using other actors' voices). The film belongs to the film noir genre, and contains themes typical of it such as plastic surgery and identity theft.

Johnny Depp

John Christopher Depp II (born June 9, 1963) is an American actor, producer and musician. He has been nominated for ten Golden Globe Awards, winning one for Best Actor for his performance of the title role in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2008) and has been nominated for three Academy Awards for Best Actor, among other accolades.

Depp rose to prominence on the 1980s television series 21 Jump Street, becoming a teen idol. He is regarded as one of the world's biggest film stars. He has gained praise from reviewers for his portrayals of screenwriter-director Ed Wood in Ed Wood, undercover FBI agent Joseph D. Pistone in Donnie Brasco, author J. M. Barrie in Finding Neverland, and Boston gangster Whitey Bulger in Black Mass. Depp is the third highest-grossing actor worldwide, as films featuring Depp have grossed over US$3.7 billion at the United States box office and over US$10 billion worldwide. He has been listed in the 2012 Guinness World Records as the world's highest-paid actor, with earnings of US$75 million. His most commercially successful films are the Pirates of the Caribbean series, which grossed US$4.5 billion, the Fantastic Beasts film series, which grossed US$1.3 billion, Alice in Wonderland, which grossed US$1 billion, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, which grossed US$474 million, and The Tourist, which grossed US$278 million.Depp had a supporting role in Oliver Stone's 1986 Vietnam War film Platoon and played the title character in the 1990 romantic dark fantasy Edward Scissorhands. He later found box office success in the adventure film Sleepy Hollow (1999), the swashbuckler film series Pirates of the Caribbean (2003–present), the fantasy films Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005) and Alice in Wonderland (2010), the animated comedy western Rango (2011) (in which he voiced the title character), and most recently Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald (2018). Depp has collaborated on nine films with director, producer and friend Tim Burton. Depp was inducted as a Disney Legend in 2015. He has performed in numerous musical groups, including forming the rock supergroup Hollywood Vampires along with Alice Cooper and Joe Perry.

Martin Landau

Martin James Landau (; June 20, 1928 – July 15, 2017) was an American actor, acting coach, producer, and editorial cartoonist. His career began in the 1950s, with early film appearances including a supporting role in Alfred Hitchcock's North by Northwest (1959). He played regular roles in the television series Mission: Impossible (for which he received several Emmy Award nominations and a Golden Globe Award) and Space: 1999.

Landau received the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actor – Motion Picture, as well as his first nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor, for his role in Tucker: The Man and His Dream (1988); he received his second Oscar nomination for his appearance in Crimes and Misdemeanors (1989). His performance in the supporting role of Bela Lugosi in Ed Wood (1994) earned him an Academy Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award and a Golden Globe Award. He continued to perform in film and television, and headed the Hollywood branch of the Actors Studio until his death in July 2017.

Night of the Ghouls

Night of the Ghouls is a horror film written and directed by Ed Wood. The film features some reoccuring cast members and characters from Bride of the Monster, including Tor Johnson reprising his role of Lobo and Paul Marco again playing the character of Kelton, while the Amazing Criswell plays himself in the frame story of the film. Another returning character is Police Captain Robbins of Homicide, although the character is played by Harvey B. Dunn in Bride, and by Johnny Carpenter in Night. (Dunn however does appear in Night, albeit playing a different character).

Night of the Ghouls was never released theatrically nor shown on television, and was thought for years to be a lost film. It was finally released direct to video by Wade Williams in 1984.

Plan 9 from Outer Space

Plan 9 from Outer Space is a 1959 American independent black-and-white science fiction horror film, written, produced, directed, and edited by Ed Wood, that stars Gregory Walcott, Mona McKinnon, Tor Johnson, and "Vampira" (Maila Nurmi), and is narrated by Criswell. The film also posthumously bills Bela Lugosi as a star (silent footage of the actor had actually been shot by Wood for another, unfinished film just prior to Lugosi's death in August 1956). Plan 9 from Outer Space was released theatrically in 1959 by Distributors Corporation of America (then credited as Valiant Pictures).

The storyline concerns extraterrestrials who are seeking to stop humanity from creating a doomsday weapon that could destroy the universe. The aliens implement "Plan 9", a scheme to resurrect the Earth's dead, referred to as "ghouls". By causing chaos, the aliens hope the crisis will force humanity to listen to them. If not, the aliens will then destroy mankind with armies of the undead. The film was originally developed under the title Grave Robbers from Outer Space, but its financial backers objected to this title, which they saw as being sacrilegious, and it was retitled Plan 9 from Outer Space prior to production.

Plan 9 from Outer Space played on television in relative obscurity until 1980, when authors Harry Medved and Michael Medved dubbed it the "worst film ever made" in their book The Golden Turkey Awards. Wood and his film were posthumously given two Golden Turkey Awards for Worst Director Ever and Worst Film. It has since been retroactively described as "The epitome of so-bad-it's-good cinema" and has gained a cult following.

The Violent Years

The Violent Years is a 1956 American exploitation film directed by William Morgan and starring Jean Moorhead as Paula Parkins, the leader of a gang of juvenile delinquent high school girls. The film is notable for having an uncredited Ed Wood as the author of its screenplay.

Tim Burton

Timothy Walter Burton (born August 25, 1958) is an American filmmaker, artist, writer, and animator. He is known for his dark, gothic, and eccentric horror and fantasy films such as Beetlejuice (1988), Edward Scissorhands (1990), The Nightmare Before Christmas (1993), Ed Wood (1994), Sleepy Hollow (1999), Corpse Bride (2005), Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007), Dark Shadows (2012), and Frankenweenie (2012). He is also known for blockbusters such as the adventure comedy Pee-wee's Big Adventure (1985), the superhero films Batman (1989) and its first sequel Batman Returns (1992), the sci-fi film Planet of the Apes (2001), the fantasy drama Big Fish (2003), the musical adventure film Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (2005), and the fantasy film Alice in Wonderland (2010).

Burton has often worked with Johnny Depp and Danny Elfman, who has composed scores for all but three of the films Burton has directed. Helena Bonham Carter, Burton's former domestic partner, has appeared in many of his films. He wrote and illustrated the poetry book The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories, published in 1997 by Faber and Faber and a compilation of his drawings, sketches and other artwork, entitled The Art of Tim Burton, was released in 2009. A follow-up to The Art of Tim Burton, entitled The Napkin Art of Tim Burton: Things You Think About in a Bar, containing sketches made by Burton in napkins at bars and restaurants he occasionally visits, was released in 2015.

Ulmus parvifolia 'Ed Wood'

The Chinese Elm cultivar Ulmus parvifolia 'Ed Wood' is intended for bonsai, or even model train set landscaping. It is however reputedly hardy to −23 °C (−10 °F).

Ve Neill

Ve Neill (born Mary Flores; 1951) is an American makeup artist. She has won three Academy Awards, for the films Beetlejuice, Mrs. Doubtfire and Ed Wood. She has been nominated for eight Oscars in total.

Ed Wood
Feature films
written and directed
Short films directed
Television films directed
Films written only
Posthumous films

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