This year has been devastating to the horror community loosing so many incredible actors and directors that made such an impact on the horror genre, and rather than watching 2015’s best horror films, try these 7 films in the memory of these incredible people that made such an impact.
November 1st, 1926 – May 29th 2015
The passing of Betsy Palmer was the first hard hit we took this year, everyone felt as if they lost their own ‘mother’ after her portrayal of Mrs. Voorhees in Friday the 13th (1980).
We Recommend: Friday the 13th . Betsy will forever be immortalized as Mrs Voorhees, the mother out for revenge.
May 27th 1922 – June 7th 2015
Shortly after the loss of Betsy Palmer we took another big hit with the passing of Christopher Lee, a man who shaped horror and portrayed Dracula in Hammer films. While there are so many great movies involving Christopher Lee, from Star Wars to Lord of the Rings to James Bond to Hammer Horror, his presence will truly be missed.
We Recommend: Horror of Dracula. This classic film not only captures Christopher Lee’s incredible take on Dracula but also includes his partner in crime Peter Cushing as Dr. Van Helsing.
“Rowdy” Roddy Piper
April 17th, 1954 – July 30th 2015
Roddy was known mostly for his life long career in the WWE as well as other various wrestling organizations, but took on several horror films in his career.
We Recommend: They Live. Roddy, despite so few rolls in the genre, was forever loved for his portrayal of Nada, the asskicking, bubblegum chewing hero of They Live.
August 2nd, 1939 – August 30th 2015
The most devastating blow to the community was the loss of Writer/Director Wes Craven, Wes was responsible for changing the genre and bringing us incredible slashers & villain that will forever live on. His top works included: Last House on the Left, The Hills have Eyes, Shocker, The People Under the Stairs, Serpent and the Rainbow, Scream & Nightmare on Elm Street. Wes shook the genre with his first film Last House on the Left, I had the honor of speaking with his son in the green room during a special memorial put on for Wes at the Egyptian Theater in Hollywood, CA where they showed a special screening (with Robert Englund) of Nightmare on Elm Street, his son spoke of how people thought he was insane and demented following Last House on the Left and how he spent much of his time on the set of Hills have Eyes with his father, Wes Craven was a true Master of Horror we shall never forget.
We Recommend: A Nightmare on Elm Street. There is no easy choice here Wes brought us some of the most incredible films that have since gone on to be remade, from Last House on the Left to Scream there is no film that didn’t deserve this spot but Wes immortalized himself with his most well known series A Nightmare on Elm Street, creating a slasher that you can never truly escape.
March 4th, 1947 – November 7th 2015
Gunnar Hansen’s death was a shock to the community, passing at such a young age and working the convention circuit. Gunnar Hansen did several horror films during his career but nothing even came close to his role of the sadistic Ed Gein based Chainsaw welding killer Leatherface from Tobe Hooper’s The Texas Chainsaw Massacre.
We Recommend: The Texas Chainsaw Massacre. Considered one of the sickest, most twisted pictures of it’s time, The Texas Chainsaw Massacre welcomed the violent twisted killer with what at the time were terrifying graphic scenes. While this film is does not compare to films of its time with graphic violence or gore, this classic forever set up the genre.
April 22nd 1963 – December 22nd 2015
Just a few days ago we lost another one, Brooke McCarter. While he did not do many films or TV, Brooke is known for his role as Paul from The Lost Boys.
We Recommend: The Lost Boys. This classic vampire film caught the lusting hearts of many horror fans looking for another great vampire film, and it does just that, it’s a great film with great characters (who doesn’t love the Frog Brothers?).
Ben Woolf & Rose Siggins
September 15th 1980 – February 23rd 2015 / December 8th 1972 – December 12 2015
Both Ben & Rose were cast members on American Horror Story Freak Show, portraying the roles of ‘Freaks’, Ben’s character Meep left fans crying (literally) for his revenge in the series. Ben passed after being side swiped by an on going car while crossing the street in Hollywood earlier this year shortly after the finale of the season, while Rose passed just a few weeks back following complications with surgery.
We Recommend: American Horror Story: Freak Show. While this season was personally one of my favorites due to my love of the Freak Show. This season was set for great things with a terrifying villain and incredible casting, however, like most seasons they jumped the Shark and Twisty, who was pitched as the villain was humanized (loosing any scare factor) and gone within a few episodes however, his replacement Dandy was spectacular and a great villain. Overall the season could have been better and the ending would have sufficed if they had excluded the horrible Halloween episodes and the last few minutes of the finale in which it took it from a decent ending to very disappointing, as with every season, but overall the season was great and worth a watch to remember these two.