Amicus Productions

Amicus Productions

Amicus Productions is a British film production company, based at Shepperton Studios, England. It was founded by American producer and screenwriter Milton Subotsky and Max Rosenberg.


Amicus is perhaps best known for Subotsky's own trademark portmanteau horror anthologies, including "Dr. Terror's House of Horrors" (1964), directed by genre stalwart Freddie Francis, "Torture Garden" (1967), "The House That Dripped Blood" (1970), "Tales from the Crypt" and "Vault of Horror". The last two were based on stories from EC horror comics from the 1950s. These films, typically feature four or sometimes five short horror stories, linked by an overarching plot featuring a narrator and those listening to his story. The casts of these films are invariably comprised of name actors, each of whom play small parts in the various stories. Along with the expected genre stars, such as Peter Cushing, Christopher Lee and Herbert Lom, Amicus also drew its actors from the classical British stage (Patrick Magee, Margaret Leighton and even Sir Ralph Richardson), up-and-comers (Donald Sutherland, Robert Powell and Tom Baker), or former stars on the way down (Richard Greene, Robert Hutton, and Terry-Thomas). Some, such as Joan Collins, were in their mid-career doldrums when they signed on with Amicus.

Hammer Films

Amicus films are often mistaken for the output of the better-known Hammer Films, to which they are similar in visual style, and with which they share many stars, including Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. Unlike the period gothic Hammer films, however, Amicus productions were usually set in the present day. They now enjoy a considerable cult following of their own.

cience Fiction

Amicus Productions also produced small number of sci-fi films, with adaptations of several of the works of Edgar Rice Burroughs and, in the mid-1960s, two films based on the then-relatively-new television series "Doctor Who". "Dr. Who and the Daleks" and "Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150 AD", the first (and still the only) big-screen adaptations of the long-running series, were filmed in Technicolor at a time when the series itself was still filmed in black-and-white, giving "Dr. Who and the Daleks" the additional distinction of being the first time "Doctor Who" had appeared in colour. In these films, Peter Cushing played The Doctor, and the backstory and continuity established for the TV series were largely ignored.

In 1968, Amicus funded and produced a film version of Harold Pinter's "The Birthday Party", directed by William Friedkin, who later found fame with "The Exorcist".


In 2003, Anchor Bay Entertainment released a five disc DVD box-set of Amicus films in a coffin-shaped container in the U.K. In 2005, Amicus was revived to produce homages to the old titles as well as original horror fare. Their first production was Stuart Gordon's "Stuck" (2007).

Further reading

"Amicus: the Studio that Dripped Blood", Allan Bryce (editor)

Amicus Films

*"The City of the Dead" (U.S. title: "Horror Hotel") (1960)
*"It's Trad, Dad!" (1962)
*"Dr. Terror's House of Horrors" (1964)
*"Dr. Who and the Daleks" (1965)
*"The Skull" (1965)
*"Daleks - Invasion Earth 2150 AD" (1966)
*"The Psychopath" (1966)
*"The Deadly Bees" (1966)
*"Torture Garden" (1967)
*"Danger Route" (1967)
*"They Came from Beyond Space" (1967)
*"The Terrornauts" (1967)
*"The Birthday Party" (1968)
*"A Touch of Love" (1969)
*"Scream and Scream Again" (1969)
*"The Mind of Mr. Soames" (1969)
*"The House That Dripped Blood" (1970)
*"I, Monster" (1971)
*"What Became of Jack and Jill?" (1971)
*""Asylum"" (1972)
*"Tales from the Crypt" (1972)

*"The Vault of Horror" (1973)
*"From Beyond the Grave" (1973)
*"And Now the Screaming Starts!" (1973)
*"The Beast Must Die" (1974)
*"Madhouse" (1974)
*"The Land That Time Forgot" (1974)
*"At the Earth's Core" (1976)
*"The People That Time Forgot" (1977)

External links

*imdb company|id=0059622

[ Amicus Productions Website]

[ Amicus Productions MySpace]

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