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More than Dracula: The career of Bela Lugosi

Bela Lugosi
Wikimedia Commons

Bela Lugosi, the famous horror star got his biggest break from critics when he donned the cape and popular accent for his role in "Dracula." He's still the face of Dracula to many viewers, which is great because his role was fantastic. Lugosi, though starred in other films either it be the lead villain or even a minor but pivotal role. He deserves a short career outlook that looks at some of his movies.

The movie, "The Wedding Song," was made in 1917, it's noted as one of his first movies. The film was an Hungarian silent picture directed by, Alfréd Deésy.

Lugosi had starred in several silent pictures both Hungarian and American. "The Silent Command," (1923) would be one of his American silent features. The film was directed by, J. Gordon Edwards.

Roughly two years before "Dracula," Lugosi starred in a silent (and sound) Tod Browning mystery film, "The 13th Chair." In the film Lugosi played an Inspector.

According to his filmography, Myrna Loy and Lugosi starred in a movie together, it was a year before "Dracula." The film was called, "Renegades."

A year after "Dracula" fans of "Island of Lost Souls," can recall that Lugosi played a key part in the movie. He was the leader of the part man/part animal group.

Of course one can't count out his features with the other horror icon, Boris Karloff. Both men played wonderfully together in "The Black Cat," and "The Raven."

Here's a curious title from 1935, "Murder by Television." A mystery film. Lugosi was in several Serial mystery films during his career, some better than others.

Back about "The Black Cat," Lugosi once again starred in 1941, a film that was based on Edgar Allan Poe's work. Basil Rathbone, Alan Ladd, and Clarie Dodd were just other names that were connected to the project.

He was in Greta Garbo's famous comedy film, "Ninotchka," too. In the film he played, Commissar Razinin. He worked with famous director, Ernst Lubitsch. The movie came out in 1939.

While Lugosi was "Dracula," he also starred as Frankenstein's monster. As horror fan enthusiasts known in "Frankenstein Meets the Wolfman." Lon Chaney Jr, had reprise his role as the Wolf Man for the movie.

He starred in several ultra low-budget movies in the 50s ("Plan 9 from Outer Space") but one of his better films to come out from that decade definitely has to be "The Black Sheep," where he's once again with other favorites like Lon Chaney Jr, Basil Rathbone, and John Carradine.

So Bela Lugosi had a diverse career. He was the king of mysteries and horror of his time really. A man who could make any low budget picture just a little more interesting. Though as you notice, he wasn't just in those kind of pictures either, "Ninotchka," is an example of that.

To see more about his career and maybe watch more of his movies please click here: Lugosi Filmography.

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