The Lady from the Black Lagoon

ebook Hollywood Monsters and the Lost Legacy of Milicent Patrick

By Mallory O'Meara

cover image of The Lady from the Black Lagoon

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This acclaimed biography shines a light on a trailblazing woman who created a classic movie monster—and the author's quest to rescue her from obscurity.
As a teenager, Mallory O'Meara was thrilled to discover that one of her favorite movies, Creature from the Black Lagoon, featured a monster designed by a woman, Milicent Patrick. But while Patrick should have been hailed as a pioneer in the genre, there was little information available about her. As O'Meara discovered, Patrick's contribution had been claimed by a jealous male colleague and her career had been cut short. No one even knew if she was still alive.
As a young woman working in the horror film industry, O'Meara set out to right the wrong, and in the process discovered the full, fascinating story of an ambitious, artistic woman ahead of her time. Patrick's contribution to special effects proved to be just the latest chapter in a remarkable, unconventional life, from her youth growing up in the shadow of Hearst Castle, to her career as one of Disney's first female animators. And at last, O'Meara discovered what really had happened to Patrick after The Creature's success, and where she went.
A true-life detective story and a celebration of a forgotten feminist trailblazer, Mallory O'Meara's The Lady from the Black Lagoon establishes Patrick in her rightful place in film history while calling out a Hollywood culture where little has changed since.
A Hugo and Locus Award Finalist
A Thrillist Best Book of the Year
One of Booklist's 10 Best Art Books of the Year
The Lady from the Black Lagoon