Saturday, November 27, 2010

Farewell, Ingrid Pitt

Ingrid Pitt only starred in a handful of horror films, but she made such an indelible impression in The Vampire Lovers, The House That Dripped Blood, The Wicker Man, and Countess Dracula that she is rightfully remembered as the definitive actress of British Horror. Pitt is primarily regarded as a vampiric sex symbol, but she was also a nuanced actress who brought liveliness, wry wit, and a disarming lack of self consciousness to her performances. Born in Poland, she survived the concentration camps to become the face of Hammer Pictures in the '70s as Elizabeth Bathory in Countess Dracula and Carmilla Karnstein in The Vampire Lovers. She was as adoring of her fans as they were of her, hosting an annual gathering of her fan club at a restaurant in London's Polish Centre. Pitt died of heart failure on November 23, two days after she turned 73.

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