How Universal Pictures Created Enduring Images of Iconic Movie Monsters

Renowned monster expert Dr. Emily Zarka of the PBS series Storied looks at the iconic movie monsters of Universal Pictures in the early 20th Century and how the images of these monsters have endured for many decades and will continue to do so in the future. The entire video was filmed in black and white in order to set the mood.

Some monsters call to mind very specific images. Their iconic on-screen personas overshadow their earlier histories. … These famous Monster faces inspired decades of Halloween costumes, and make up a distinctive brand of horror that defined early Hollywood cinema.

Universal also became known for creating the perfect horror environment with their visual styling.

Using a now established cast and crew from makeup artists to set designers, the visual style of the Universal horror film stayed consistent and immediately recognizable. Repeated visual and technical cues like violent storms, operating room or lab sets, offscreen female screams, large ancestral homes, heavy use of shadows, and creative cinematic framework solidified the style.

via Miss Cellania

Lori Dorn
Lori Dorn

Lori is a Laughing Squid Contributing Editor based in New York City who has been writing blog posts for over a decade. She also enjoys making jewelry, playing guitar, taking photos and mixing craft cocktails. Lori can be found posting on Threads and sharing photos on Instagram.