The Curse of the Werewolf

The Curse of the Werewolf
The Curse of the Werewolf

film poster by Bill Wiggins
Directed by Terence Fisher
Produced by Michael Carreras
Anthony Hinds
Written by Anthony Hinds (aka John Elder)
Narrated by Clifford Evans

Clifford Evans
Oliver Reed
Yvonne Romain
Catherine Feller
Anthony Dawson

Michael Ripper
Music by Benjamin Frankel
Cinematography Arthur Grant
Editing by Alfred Cox
Studio Hammer Film Productions
Distributed by Universal-International Pictures
Release date(s) United Kingdom 1 May 1961
United States June 7, 1961
Running time 91 minutes
Country United Kingdom
Language English

The Curse of the Werewolf (1961) is a British film based on the novel The Werewolf of Paris by Guy Endore.[1] The film was made by the British film studio Hammer Film Productions and was shot at Bray Studios.



The story is set in 18th Century Spain. A beggar is imprisoned by a cruel marques after making inappropriate comments at the nobleman's wedding. The beggar is forgotten but manages to survive another fifteen years. His only human contact is with the jailer and his beautiful mute daughter (Yvonne Romain). The aging, decrepit Marques makes advances on the jailer's daughter when she is cleaning his room. When she refuses him, the Marques has her thrown into the dungeon with the beggar. The beggar, driven mad by his long confinement, rapes her and then dies.

The girl is released the next day and sent back up to "entertain" the Marques. Instead she kills the old man and flees. She is found in the forest by the kindly gentleman-scholar Don Alfredo Corledo (Clifford Evans) who lives alone with his housekeeper, Teresa (Hira Talfrey). The warm and motherly Teresa soon nurses the girl back to health, but she dies after giving birth to a baby on Christmas day (a fact that Teresa considers "unlucky.")

Alfredo and Teresa raise the young boy, whom they name Leon. Leon is cursed both by the evil circumstances of his birth and by being born on Christmas Day. An early accident gives him a taste for blood which he must struggle to overcome.

Leon grows into a young man (Oliver Reed) and leaves home to seek work at the Gomez vineyard. Don Fernando (Ewen Solon) sets Leon to work in the wine cellar with Jose Amadayo (Martin Matthews) with whom he quickly forms a friendship. Leon soon falls in love with Fernando's daughter, Cristina (Catherine Feller), but when his love is thwarted he grows increasingly violent. His wolf nature rising to the surface, he snarls and drools his way through the village by the light of the full moon. Shocked and disgusted by his antics, the local people summon his scholarly step-father, who has been preparing himself for years to face this moment. Though torn with grief, the wise Alfredo shoots Leon dead and covers his body with a cloak.



  1. ^ *Clemens, Carlos (1968). Horror Movies: An illustrated Survey. London: Panther Books. p. 208. 

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