Theatre of Blood (1973)

UK, 1973
35mm film, colour, 1.66:1
mono, English

A British horror film deirected by Douglas Hickox.

Plot Summary

After being snubbed by a prestigious theatrical Circle, Shakespearian actor Edward Lionheart attempts to take his own life by leaping from their offices into the Thames. But he's rescued by a gang of meths drinking tramps and, teaming up with his adoring daughter Edwina, starts to plot a suitable – soon, members of the Circle are dying in decidedly Shakespearian manner…


Directed by: Douglas Hickox
© Harbour Productions, Inc., MCMLXXIII [1973]
Sam Jaffe and Harbour Productions, Inc. present. Filmed entirely on location by Cineman Films Limited
Executive Producers: Gustave Berne and Sam Jaffe
Produced by: John Kohn and Stanley Mann
Production Manager: David Anderson
Screenplay by: Anthony Greville-Bell
Based on an Idea by: Stanley Mann and John Kohn
Assistant Director: Dominic Fulford
Continuity: Angela Allen
Director of Photography: Wolfgang Suschitzky
Camera Operator: Ronnie Taylor
Editor: Malcolm Cooke
Assistant Editor: Chris Kelly
Colour by: DeLuxe
Music Composed and Conducted by: Michael J. Lewis
Sound Mixer: Simon Kaye
Sound Editor: Les Wiggins
Dubbing Mixer: Douglas Turner
Costume Designer: Michael Baldwin
Wardrobe Assistant: Terry Smith
Make-Up: George Blackler
Hairdresser: Pearl Tipaldi
Special Effects: John Stears
Production Designer: Michael Seymour
Set Decorator: Ann Mollo
Construction Manager: Peter Verrard
Assistant to the Producers: Sara Romilly
Choreographer of Meths Drinkers: Tutte Lemkow
Filmed entirely on location in London, England
Locations: Kensall Green Cemetary, London, England, UK [uncredited]; 93 Albert Embankment, Vauxhall, London, England, UK [uncredited]
Stunt Arranged by: Terry York

Vincent Price (Edward Lionheart)
Diana Rigg (Edwina Lionheart)
Ian Hendry (Peregrine Devlin)
Harry Andrews (Trevor Dickman)
Coral Browne (Chloe Moon)
Robert Coote (Oliver Larding)
Jack Hawkins (Solomon Psaltery)
Michael Hordern (George Maxwell)
Arthur Lowe (Horace Sprout)
Robert Morley (Meredith Merridew)
Dennis Price (Hector Snipe)
Diana Dors (Maisie Psaltry)
Madeline Smith (Rosemary)
Joan Hickson (Mrs Sprout)
Renee Asherson (Mrs Maxwell)
Milo O'Shea as Inspector Boot
Eric Sykes as Sergeant Dogge
Bunny Reed, Peter Thornton (policemen)
Charles Sinnickson (vicar)
Brigid Erin Bates (maid)
Tutte Lemkow, Stanley Bates, Eric Francis, Sally Gilmore, John Gilpin, Joyce Graeme, Jack Maguire, Declan Mulholland (the meths drinkers)
Tony Calvin [ photographer – uncredited]

Alternative Titles

Much Ado about Murder – working title
Theater of Blood – US title

Extracts included in
Vincent Price (1988)

See also
The Abominable Dr. Phibes (1971)
House of Wax (1953)
Se7en (1995)
Who Is Killing the Great Chefs of Europe? (1978)


The Aurum Film Encyclopedia: Horror by Phil Hardy (ed.) p.284
English Gothic: A Century of Horror Cinema by Jonathan Rigby pp.5, 15, 210, 235-36, 236, 247, 248, 294, 307
The Films of Vincent Price by Iain F. McAsh pp.30-32; 45
Horror and Science Fiction Films II by Donald C. Willis p.393
Horror Films of the 1970s by John Kenneth Muir pp.304-306 – credits, synopsis, review
Merchant of Menace: The Life and Films of Vincent Price by Denis Meikle pp.298-307; 377
by Walt Lee p.485 – credits
on Screen by Daniel Rosenthal pp.180-181 – illustrated article
Vincent Price: The Art of Fear by Denis Meikle pp.184-191; 232
Vincent Price Unmasked by James Robert Parish and Steven Whitney pp.134-135; 241-242
Walking Shadows: Shakespeare in the National Film and Television Archive by Luke McKernan and Olwen Terris (eds.) pp.44, 58, 74, 80, 85, 107, 128, 139, 152, 172, 173, 194-195 – illustrated credits, notes
Women in the Horror Films of Vincent Price by Jonathan Malcolm Lampley pp.162-169; 192
X-Cert 2: The British Independent Horror Film 1971-1983 pp.95-103; 279