Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Ingrid Pitt, 1937-2010

My favorite Basil Gogos painting, executed for the cover of MONSTERSCENE #8, was in her likeness. I was never as dazzled by THE VAMPIRE LOVERS as other Hammer fans were, finding Ingrid absurdly mature to be playing a character so young and ethereal as Carmilla, but I always liked her COUNTESS DRACULA and thought she had her most exquisite moment onscreen in THE HOUSE THAT DRIPPED BLOOD -- if only THAT briefly evoked vampiress had a full feature in which to flex her wings!

But it is the flirtatious, warm-blooded, real life woman I am remembering now, from our meeting at the October 1994 Chiller Theater convention. She understood men and knew how to play them; in the few days we spent in the same hotel, we ate, argued, flirted and talked together -- about her early life in Poland and about the death of her SOUND OF HORROR cast mate Soledad Miranda, among other things -- and she spoke of her pain in ways that made me feel it too. When I checked out, she was there at the front desk to kiss me goodbye.

Ingrid Pitt was in fact the reinvention of a Polish girl named Ingoushka Petrov, born to obscene poverty in war-torn Poland, whose adolescence was scarred (as she told me) by peers who jeered her as "flat-chested." She was not only an actress but also a published writer and entrepreneur, with four novels and several more anthologies and memoirs to her credit. I heard she could be a shark in business, which I respect, as I do the fact that she managed to found a cottage industry out of being Ingrid Pitt, scream queen and survivor. Now the surviving is over and the enduring may begin.

Rest in peace, dear lady; you've left your mark.

5 comments:

  1. Thank you Tim. Viva Ingrid Pitt!

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  2. Oh my God, I'm so sad! I hadn't heard. Thanks, though, for such a lovely and personal tribute to such a larger-than-life personality. She'll certainly be missed.

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  3. A sad day indeed. I could have sworn she was truly immortal.

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  4. Ingrid used to come into a shop i worked in back in the early 90's .
    I don't know what i expected her to be like ,but she was lovely person , charming and charismatic. I couldn't do enough for her.
    She wont be forgotten.

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  5. Dan Day, Jr.8:17 PM

    Nice remembrance of Ingrid, Tim.

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