69 Facts About Boris Karloff


William Henry Pratt, better known by his stage name Boris Karloff, was an English actor who starred as Frankenstein's monster in the horror film Frankenstein, which established him as a horror icon.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,274

Boris Karloff reprised the role in Bride of Frankenstein and Son of Frankenstein .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,275

Boris Karloff was born William Henry Pratt on 23 November 1887, at 36 Forest Hill Road, Dulwich, Surrey, England.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,276

Boris Karloff's brother, Sir John Thomas Pratt, was a British diplomat.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,277

Edward John Pratt was Anglo-Indian, with a British father and Indian mother, while Boris Karloff's mother had some Indian ancestry, thus Boris Karloff had a relatively dark complexion that differed from his peers at the time.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,278

Boris Karloff learned how to manage his stutter, but not his lisp, which was noticeable throughout his career in the film industry.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,279

Boris Karloff was the youngest of nine children, and following his mother's death was brought up by his elder siblings.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,280

Boris Karloff did not reunite with his family until he returned to Britain to make The Ghoul, extremely worried that his siblings would disapprove of his new, macabre claim to world fame.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,281

Boris Karloff joined the Jeanne Russell Company in 1911 and performed in towns like Kamloops and Prince Albert .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,282

Boris Karloff later took a job as a railway baggage handler and joined the Harry St Clair Company that performed in Minot, North Dakota, for a year in an opera house above a hardware store.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,283

From this grueling work with the BCER and other employers, Boris Karloff was left with back problems for the rest of his life.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,284

Boris Karloff was able to find work with the Haggerty Repertory for a while .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,285

Once Boris Karloff arrived in Hollywood, he appeared in dozens of silent films, but the work was sporadic, and he often had to take up manual labour such as digging ditches or delivering construction plaster to make ends meet.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,286

Boris Karloff was in another serial, The Masked Rider, the earliest of his film appearances that survived.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,287

Boris Karloff played an Indian in The Last of the Mohicans with Wallace Beery and he would often be cast as an Arab or Indian in his early films.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,288

Boris Karloff did a Western, The Hellion, and a drama, Dynamite Dan .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,289

Boris Karloff could be seen in Parisian Nights, Forbidden Cargo, The Prairie Wife and the serial Perils of the Wild .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,290

Boris Karloff went back to bit part status in Never the Twain Shall Meet, directed by Maurice Tourneur, but he had a good support part in Lady Robinhood starring Evelyn Brent in the titular role.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,291

Boris Karloff went on to be in The Greater Glory, Her Honor, the Governor, The Bells, The Nickel-Hopper with Mabel Normand, The Golden Web, The Eagle of the Sea, Flames, Old Ironsides with Wallace Beery and Esther Ralston, Flaming Fury, Valencia, The Man in the Saddle with Hoot Gibson, Tarzan and the Golden Lion, Let It Rain, The Meddlin' Stranger, The Princess from Hoboken, The Phantom Buster with Buddy Roosevelt, and Soft Cushions .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,292

Boris Karloff had roles in Two Arabian Knights, The Love Mart with Noah Beery Sr.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,293

Boris Karloff was in The Devil's Chaplain, The Fatal Warning for Richard Thorpe, The Phantom of the North, Two Sisters, Anne Against the World, Behind That Curtain with Warner Baxter, and The King of the Kongo, a serial directed by Thorpe.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,294

Boris Karloff had an uncredited bit part in The Unholy Night directed by Lionel Barrymore, and bigger parts in The Bad One, The Sea Bat starring Charles Bickford and directed by Lionel Barrymore and Wesley Ruggles, and The Utah Kid directed by Thorpe.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,295

Boris Karloff did another serial for Thorpe, King of the Wild, then had support parts in Cracked Nuts with Wheeler and Woolsey, Young Donovan's Kid with Jackie Cooper, Smart Money with Edward G Robinson and James Cagney in their only film together, The Public Defender with Richard Dix, I Like Your Nerve with Douglas Fairbanks Jr.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,296

Boris Karloff could be seen in The Yellow Ticket with Elissa Landi, Lionel Barrymore and Laurence Olivier during Olivier's memorable first round in Hollywood, The Mad Genius with John Barrymore, The Guilty Generation with Robert Young and Tonight or Never with Gloria Swanson.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,297

Boris Karloff acted in eighty movies before being found by James Whale and cast in Frankenstein .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,298

Boris Karloff was loaned to MGM to play the titular role in The Mask of Fu Manchu, for which he had top billing.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,299

Boris Karloff returned to England to star in The Ghoul, then made a non-horror film for John Ford, The Lost Patrol, where his performance was highly acclaimed.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,300

Boris Karloff was third billed in the Twentieth Century Pictures historical film The House of Rothschild with George Arliss, which was highly popular.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,301

Boris Karloff reprised the role of Frankenstein's monster in Bride of Frankenstein for James Whale.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,302

Columbia, Boris Karloff made The Black Room then he returned to Universal for The Invisible Ray with Lugosi, more a science fiction film.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,303

Boris Karloff went to Monogram to play the title role of a Chinese detective in Mr Wong, Detective, which led to a series.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,304

Boris Karloff's portrayal of the character is an example of Hollywood's use of yellowface and its portrayal of East Asians in the earlier half of the 20th century.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,305

Boris Karloff reprised his role, with Lugosi starring as Ygor and top-billed Basil Rathbone as Frankenstein.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,306

Boris Karloff returned to Universal to make Tower of London with Rathbone, playing the murderous henchman of King Richard III.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,307

Boris Karloff made a fourth Mr Wong film at Monogram The Fatal Hour .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,308

Boris Karloff finished a six picture commitment with Monogram with The Ape .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,309

Boris Karloff starred in a radio adaptation produced by Screen Guild Theatre in 1946.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,310

Boris Karloff returned to film roles in The Climax, an unsuccessful attempt to repeat the success of Phantom of the Opera .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,311

Boris Karloff made three films for producer Val Lewton at RKO: The Body Snatcher, his last teaming with Lugosi, Isle of the Dead and Bedlam .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,312

Boris Karloff left Universal because he thought the Frankenstein franchise had run its course; the entries in the series after Son of Frankenstein were B-pictures.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,313

Danny Kaye comedy, The Secret Life of Walter Mitty, Boris Karloff appeared in a brief but starring role as Dr Hugo Hollingshead, a psychiatrist.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,314

Boris Karloff appeared in a film noir, Lured, and as an Indian in Unconquered .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,315

Boris Karloff appeared as the villainous Captain Hook in Peter Pan in a 1950 stage musical adaptation which featured Jean Arthur.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,316

Boris Karloff returned to horror films with The Strange Door and The Black Castle .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,317

Boris Karloff was nominated for a Tony Award for his work opposite Julie Harris in The Lark, by the French playwright Jean Anouilh, about Joan of Arc, which he reprised years later on TV's Hallmark Hall of Fame.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,318

Boris Karloff appeared in Abbott and Costello Meet Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde and visited Italy for The Island Monster and India for Sabaka .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,319

Later, as a guest on NBC's The Gisele MacKenzie Show, Boris Karloff sang "Those Were the Good Old Days" from Damn Yankees while Gisele MacKenzie performed the solo, "Give Me the Simple Life".

FactSnippet No. 1,155,320

Boris Karloff served as host and one of the stars of the anthology series The Veil, a 12-episode Hal Roach TV series which was never broadcast at all due to financial problems at the producing studio; the complete series was later rediscovered in the 1990s and eventually released on DVD.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,321

Boris Karloff made some horror films in the late 1950s: Voodoo Island, The Haunted Strangler, Frankenstein 1970, and Corridors of Blood .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,322

Boris Karloff donned the Frankenstein Monster make-up for the last time in 1962 for a Halloween episode of the TV series Route 66, which featured Peter Lorre and Lon Chaney, Jr.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,323

Boris Karloff went to Italy to appear in Black Sabbath directed by Mario Bava.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,324

Boris Karloff made The Raven for Roger Corman and American International Pictures .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,325

British actress Suzan Farmer, who played his daughter in the film, later recalled Boris Karloff was aloof during production "and wasn't the charming personality people perceived him to be", probably because he was in such intense pain in the 1960s.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,326

Boris Karloff later received a Grammy Award for "Best Recording For Children" after the recording was commercially released.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,327

Boris Karloff starred in Targets, the first feature film directed by Peter Bogdanovich, featuring two separate plotlines that converge into one.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,328

Boris Karloff starred as the retired horror film actor, Byron Orlok, a thinly disguised version of himself; Orlok was facing an end of life crisis, which he resolves through a confrontation with the crazed gunman at the drive-in cinema.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,329

Boris Karloff ended his career by appearing in four low-budget Mexican horror films: Isle of the Snake People, The Incredible Invasion, Fear Chamber and House of Evil.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,330

Boris Karloff was originally slated to travel to Mexico to shoot the films, but he had emphysema and crippling arthritis.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,331

Boris Karloff recorded the title role of Shakespeare's Cymbeline for the Shakespeare Recording Society .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,332

Boris Karloff recorded the narration for Sergei Prokofiev's Peter and the Wolf with the Vienna State Opera Orchestra under Mario Rossi.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,333

Boris Karloff was credited for editing several horror anthologies, commencing with Tales of Terror .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,334

Boris Karloff was a charter member of the Screen Actors Guild, and he was especially outspoken due to the long hours he spent in makeup while playing Frankenstein's Monster and the Mummy.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,335

Boris Karloff was an early member of the Hollywood Cricket Club.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,336

Boris Karloff married six times and had one child, daughter Sara Karloff, by fifth wife Dorothy Stine.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,337

Boris Karloff contracted bronchitis in 1968 and was hospitalised at University College Hospital.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,338

Boris Karloff died of pneumonia at the King Edward VII Hospital, Midhurst, in Sussex, on 2 February 1969, at the age of 81.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,339

Boris Karloff's body was cremated following a requested modest service at Guildford Crematorium, Godalming, Surrey, where he is commemorated by a plaque in the Garden of Remembrance.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,340

An illustrated likeness of Boris Karloff continued to introduce each issue of this publication for more than a decade after his death ; the comic lasted until the early 1980s .

FactSnippet No. 1,155,341

Boris Karloff acted in 21 episodes of the Inner Sanctum ABC anthology radio series from 1941 to 1952:.

FactSnippet No. 1,155,342