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Rungs on a Ladder

Hammer Films Seen Through a Soft Gauze

by Christopher Neame Author · Christopher Lee Author of introduction, etc.


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Rungs on a Ladder looks at part of the movie industry from a unique perspective. Christopher Neame, son of director Ronald, started his career (in the early 1960s) at the very bottom, but determinedly made his way to the top. Neame fondly recalls his learning years at Bray Studios and beyond. Simply and often amusingly, he recounts his days with Hammer Films and observes many of the characters both in front of and behind the camera—names synonymous with those classic tales of Gothic horror: director Terrence Fisher, producers Anthony Hinds, Michael Carreras and Anthony Nelson Keys, screenwriter/producer Jimmy Sangster, and of course, Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee. Along the way, he encounters those less obviously connected to Hammer like Joan Fontaine, Joseph Cotten, Norman Lloyd, and Bette Davis. Never the one to reserve his critical eye for others alone, Neame willingly says mea culpa when deserved. The book begins with his rude awakening to the "string and sealing wax" world of Dracula Prince of Darkness and follows his journey through sixteen subsequent productions including three Frankensteins, The Devil Rides Out (which American distributors thought was going to be a Western!), and a couple of Mummy films. Neame also shares stories of his participation in non-genre ventures like Quatermass and the Pit, The Anniversary, Demons of the Mind and Fear in the Night.

Includes 16 pages of photos.

Publication Details

Scarecrow Press
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Christopher Neame (Author)

Christopher Neame's roots are firmly embedded in the film industry. The grandson of actress Ivy Close and son of director Ronald Neame, Christopher has been responsible for many film and television productions. He is currently producing a stage mu...

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