Avon Cinema. Providence, RI. From my blog Pictures of Bathrooms.
Bouquet Agate from a place near Carrasco Ranchito, Chihuahua, Mexico
October 20, 1882: Birth of Bela Lugosi, actor, union leader and participant in the 1919 Hungarian Revolution
Bela Lugosi, the actor world famous as the face of Dracula, was born on Oct. 20, 1882. A distinguished actor on the Hungarian stage, he was a leader of the theatrical workers’ union and supporter of Béla Kun’s Hungarian Soviet Republic of 1919. Like many other leftists, he was forced into exile by the subsequent counter-revolution.
Lugosi was notoriously ill treated by Hollywood despite his iconic performance in Dracula and other horror films. Along with fellow horror star Boris Karloff, Lugosi was a major force in the establishment of the Screen Actors Guild union during the Great Depression.
Although Lugosi was careful to keep his political affiliations on the down low, it’s likely that his revolutionary history was a cause of the well documented hostility of Universal Studios boss Carl Laemmle, a right-wing German emigre, toward the star who saved his studio from bankruptcy in 1931.
It’s tempting to speculate what his career might have been like had he gone East instead of West … where he may have had the opportunity to work with revolutionary filmmakers like Eisenstein.
A winter project work in progress.