Definition February 2024 - Web


F ew names loom as large in the annals of British horror as Hammer Films. During its heyday, the venerated London studio dominated the box office with its fantastically lurid gothic melodramas, enjoying success on success with iconic features like The Curse of Frankenstein (1957), Dracula (1958) and The Mummy (1959). Hammer doused horror in Technicolor for the first time, lured A-list actors to the genre and changed the game forever with its singular aesthetic, forging a legacy that lives on to this day. After years of silence, the legendary production house has been reanimated, assembling a team of horror lovers that are enthusiastically sinking their teeth into a fresh slate of spine-chilling films. For Steve Rogers, responsible for managing the Hammer Films archive and overseeing the development of new products, being the custodian of such an iconic brand was a dream come true. “The studio’s history of pioneering horror and suspense genres, combined

with its distinctive style and storytelling, has always fascinated me,” he enthuses. “I’m so passionate about bringing these timeless classics to contemporary viewers, while paying homage to Hammer’s remarkable heritage and innovative spirit.” The road to revival began with the acquisition of Hammer by British theatre impresario John Gore (a classic case of nominative determinism if ever we saw one), who claims to have been enchanted by the magic of the studio’s films ever since he was a young boy. A big milestone on the horizon is Hammer’s 90th anniversary this year, which Rogers sees as a perfect opportunity to reflect on the studio’s history and determine what its future will look like. “As we celebrate 90 years, we’re not just reminiscing; we are actively shaping the future of horror cinema,” he comments. “We’re committed to keeping the Hammer legacy alive and thrilling, ensuring we continue to be a beloved name in horror for decades to come.”

The iconic Hammer Films has risen from beyond the grave, promising a spine- chilling revamp and a new slate of films. Nicola Foley finds out more



Powered by