The Creature Chronicles

Exploring the Black Lagoon Trilogy

Softcover Edition

$39.95

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About the Book

He was the final addition to Universal’s “royal family” of movie monsters: the Creature from the Black Lagoon. With his scaly armor, razor claws and a face only a mother octopus could love, this Amazon denizen was perhaps the most fearsome beast in the history of Hollywood’s Studio of Horrors. But he also possessed a sympathetic quality which elevated him fathoms above the many aquatic monsters who swam in his wake. Everything you ever wanted to know about the Gill Man and his mid–1950s film career (Creature from the Black Lagoon, Revenge of the Creature, The Creature Walks Among Us) is collected in this book, packed to the gills with hour-by-hour production histories, cast bios, analyses, explorations of the music, script-to-screen comparisons, in-depth interviews and an ocean of fin-tastic photos.

About the Author(s)

Tom Weaver lives in Sleepy Hollow, New York, and has been interviewing moviemakers since the early 1980s. The New York Times called him one of the leading scholars in the horror field and USA Today has described him as the king of the monster hunters. Classic Images called him “the best interviewer we have today.” He is a frequent contributor to numerous film magazines and has been featured in the prestigious Best American Movie Writing. A frequent DVD audio commentator, he is the author of numerous reference and other nonfiction books about American popular culture.

David Schecter has been a writer for more than three decades, and also produces soundtrack recordings for his Monstrous Movie Music CD label, which operates out of Chatsworth, California. He lives in Chatsworth.

Steve Kronenberg is the managing editor of Noir City, the e-magazine published quarterly by the Film Noir Foundation. He lives in Millville, New Jersey.

Bibliographic Details

Tom Weaver, David Schecter and Steve Kronenberg

Introduction by Julie Adams
Format: softcover (8.5 x 11)
Pages: 408
Bibliographic Info: 295 photos, notes, index
Copyright Date: 2018 [2014]
pISBN: 978-1-4766-7386-8
eISBN: 978-1-4766-1580-6
Imprint: McFarland

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xi
Introduction by Julie Adams 1

PART ONE
1. Creature from the Black Lagoon (1954) 11
2. Revenge of the Creature (1955) 139
3. The Creature Walks Among Us (1956) 227

PART TWO
4. The Official Gill Man Guide to the Sunshine State 303
5. Aquatic Kith and Kin 305
• The Return of the Creature (1954) 305
• Curucu, Beast of the Amazon (1956) 310
• The Monster of Piedras Blancas (1959) 312
• Octaman (1971) 315
6. Creature Conversations 319
• Ginger Stanley 319
• Mike Gannon 337
• Vikki Megowan 342
7. A Brief History of The Black Lagoon Bugle (David J. Schow) 349
8. Revenge of the Return of the Remake of Creature from the Black Lagoon (David J. Schow) 353

Chapter Notes 363
Index 387

Book Reviews & Awards

  • Best Book of the Year—Rondo Hatton Classic Horror Award
  • Winner, Ray and Pat Browne Best Reference Award—Popular Culture Association
  • “each movie is examined through an exhaustive account of production history, interviews, biographies, and photographs. Thoroughly researched…packed with first-hand narratives from producers, directors, costume designers, and actors”—Library Journal
  • “a best book of the year…magnificent…exhaustive is too tame a word to describe the treatment the films get here. If you love these movies, this is the volume to get…a beautiful looking book all around…definitive…Weaver is an inspired and astute tour guide on this Amazon expedition. Weaver is never dull, always gets to the heart of the matter, and the personal information he gleans from interviewees and other sources are always interesting, enlightening and engaging. Tom’s attention to details is fabulous. McFarland really went all-out with the design of the book…it just can’t be beat. It’s an exhaustive, lively and essential work of scholarship. A must read and the best book of its kind, bar none”—Classic Images; “a treasure trove…outstanding”—LITERRA
  • “an amazing, fantastic book! Creature Chronicles has a beautiful cover jacket, slick paper, and astoundingly great layout. Everything about the presentation is first class…above first class! The research is mind-blowing. If you are a fan of the Universal science fiction films of the 1950s, this may be the best thing ever”—Little Shoppe of Horrors
  • “fascinating behind-the-scenes photos”—VideoScope
  • “incredibly, impossibly, obsessively researched and detailed. I’ve never seen anything like it. Nothing is left out. It’s a fetishist’s dream! The packaging is handsome, the pictures and documents abundant and gratifying”—Films in Review; “the definitive, end-all-be-all account…everything there is to know about the Gill Man”—Bookgasm.com
  • “if ever there was an ultimate book for the Gill Man from ‘The Black Lagoon Trilogy’ then ‘The Creature Chronicles’ must surely be it. Stacked with rare photos from behind the scenes…superb…a must have”—SF Crowsnest
  • “plumbed with submarine depth and paleontological detail…by the prolific Tom Weaver, who is to monster movies what Jacques Cousteau was to the sea: a tireless investigator, researcher and champion…a definitive work of scholarship…a true trilogy”—The Commercial Appeal
  • “it aims and succeeds to be the definitive, end-all-be-all account on its subject”—Flick Attack
  • “after reading the book, I readily believe that Tom has tracked down every living soul who ever got near the Gill Man…fascinating”—DVD Talk
  • “a Psychobabble top reviewed item…definitive…everything, you’ve ever wondered about our beloved man-fish and his three movies are covered between its nearly 400 over-sized, hardbound, photo-splattered pages”—Psychobabble
  • “tells you everything you could want to know about the Creature movies”—Pasatiempo
  • “a one -stop source for everything you need to know about the films…. Thank you once again McFarland for another must have classic horror film book”—Scarlet
  • “the authors elaborately detail the making of the movies, profile the teams involved…and display hundreds of production stills”—ProtoView

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