Theater Of Blood (1973)
Vinnie as Edward Lionheart and Distinctive Dummies 12 inch custom figure.
Theatre of Blood
“The script was absolutely brilliant with wonderful dialogue. I simply could not wait to play this character of Edward Lionheart. I mean, what actor would not jump at the chance to give back some of his own to the critics?”
“Diana Rigg is one of the best actresses in England as well as being a great deal of fun to know…She worked in drag during portions of our film, during the scene where I murder the lady that was to become my wife, Coral. Diana came on set wearing these tight trousers with a large sock stuffed in her pants. I roared with laughter, as did the crew. They loved her, as do I.”
- Vincent Price
Lionheart sets fire to the theater to thwart the police, who save Devlin just in the nick of time. In the confusion, one of the group of vagrants kills Edwina, hitting her over the head with the award. Lionheart retreats, carrying Edwina’s body to the roof and delivering Lear’s final monologue just before the roof caves in and plunges, flaming, to his death. To this, Devlin comments “A remarkable performance. He was overacting as usual, but he knew how to make an exit.”
Taking the blinding of the Earl of Gloucester in King Lear as inspiration, Lionheart has arranged a contraption containing two red-hot daggers, which are poised to blind the critic should he refuse to recant and whom he will release otherwise. Devlin stands his ground despite the menace and refuses to change his original choice for the award. The slow-moving contraption is released; however, police sirens are heard outside and the device becomes stuck temporarily.
Critic Peregrine Devlin (Ian Hendry) is kidnapped by Lionheart and forces him to present with the “coveted” Critic’s Circle Award for Best Actor.
Effeminate Critic Meredith Merridew (Robert Morley) is tricked by Edward Lionheart and company into eating his “babies” (his beloved poodles) just as Queen Tamora was fed the flesh of her two sons, baked in a pie, in the climax of Titus Andronicus.
Theater Of Blood made it’s network television debut on September 28th 1974 on NBC’s Saturday Night At The Movies.