Boris Karloff was born William Henry Pratt in London, England, on November 23, 1887. The birth anniversary of the beloved icon of horror coincides with Thanksgiving this year and I can think of no better way to celebrate a day of thanks than to spent some time listening to his legendary voice. I hope you enjoy this entry in honor of Mr. Karloff and his work – put together in preparation for my Thanksgiving drive – and accept my heartfelt wishes for a happy and healthy holiday.
In case you’re expecting just horror entries, I should tell you that this collection intentionally focuses on a variety of genres so that Boris Karloff’s gentle acting is as evident as his sense of humor.
Some variety fun to start with Karloff as a guest on The Chase and Sanborn Hour on January 30, 1938. Also on the show are Edgar Bergen and Charlie McCarthy, Nelson Eddy and Dorothy Lamour:
Karloff guest stars on The Eddie Cantor Show on December 17, 1941:
Inner Sanctum episode “Study for Murder” from May 3, 1942 starring Boris Karloff:
In 1943 Karloff goes to Duffy’s Tavern for a Bond Drive:
On October 23, 1945 Karloff stars in “Corridor of Doom” for Inner Sanctum:
On November 18, 1945 Karloff tries to rent a room on The Fred Allen Show:
The Boris Karloff Show episode “Who Killed Chung Ling Soo?”
Karloff reprises his stage role in this Screen Guild Theatre presentation of “Arsenic and Old Lace” co-starring Eddie Albert:
Jack Benny runs into a mysterious stranger (Karloff) on this episode of The Jack Benny Program titled “I Stand Condemned” from January 19, 1947:
Karloff plays a disc jockey in this episode of The Jimmy Durante Show from December 10, 1947:
Eddie Bracken is reading a horror story to Dorothy Lamour when Boris Karloff appears in this episode of The Sealtest Variety Theater from June 23, 1949:
To end this tribute here’s Karloff’s narration of Dr. Seuss’ “How the Grinch Stole Christmas.” This is not only a great way to kick off the season, but yet another reason to be thankful for Boris Karloff.
Karloff is one of my favorite classic horror film actors (right up there with Vincent Price). Like Price, his range was much broader, though, and his natural intelligence and fascinating personality always shone through. Plus, I think he was actually a very sweet man who loved children (from what I’ve read about him).
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Thanks for these!!! Love Karloff and Bela Lugosi both.