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Bride of Frankenstein (Universal Classics) 001
Elsa Lanchester
Birth name: Elizabeth Lanchester Sullivan
Aliases: Elizabeth Sullivan
Gender: Female
Medium(s): Film
Roles: Actress
Date of birth: October 28th, 1902
Place of birth: London, England
Date of death: December 26th, 1986
Place of death: Los Angeles, California
1st Horror: Bride of Frankenstein (1935)

Elsa Lanchester was a British actress born in Lewisham, London, England. During her early career, she appeared in several silent films in the UK then relocated to the United States after marrying fellow actor Charles Laughton. The two would go on to star in many films together over their respective careers. Lanchester is best known for her contributions to James Whale's 1935 classic The Bride of Frankenstein by Universal Pictures. Although she had very little screen time, Lanchester played a dual role in this film, appearing in the very beginning of the film as well as the very end. In the prologue to the film, Lanchester plays the part of Frankenstein author Mary Wollstonecraft Godwin and has an exchange with two of her contemporaries, Percy Shelley (whom she later married) and Lord Byron. As with the previous film Frankenstein, the character of the "mate" is not revealed in the credits and is ambiguously marked by three question marks.

Although Lanchester contributed little to the horror genre since The Bride of Frankenstein, she did appear in the 1971 film Willard as the character Henrietta Stiles. Willard was one of Lanchester's final film roles and her last horror role.

Elsa Lanchester passed away from pneumonia following a stroke the day after Christmas in Woodland Hills, California, 1986.

Body of work Edit

Film Edit

Film Year Role
The Bride of Frankenstein 1935 Mary Shelley / The Bride
The Ghost Goes West 1935 Miss Shepperton
Willard 1971 Henrietta Stiles

Notes & Trivia Edit

  • Elsa Lanchester became a U.S. citizen in 1950.
  • Elsa Lanchester was born out of wedlock.

External Links Edit



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Universal Classics Actor or Crew member
This article relates to actors or production crew members pertaining to the Universal Classics era of films. This template will categorize articles that include it into the Universal Classics crew members category.
Frankenstein logo
Frankenstein Actor or Crew member
This article relates to actors or production crew members pertaining to the Frankenstein franchise.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the Frankenstein crew members category.
Willard logo
Willard Actor or Crew member
This article relates to actors or production crew members pertaining to the Willard film franchise.
This template will categorize articles that include it into the Willard crew members category.

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