Barbara Shelley, known as ‘The Queen of Hammer,’ has died from underlying conditions on Monday after contracting COVID-19. She was 88. Known for her numerous appearances in Hammer Horror films of the 1950s and 1960s, she starred alongside other horror icons Peter Cushing and Christopher Lee in films like The Gorgon, Dracula: Prince Of Darkness, Rasputin: The Mad Monk and Quatermass And The Pit.
via Hollywood Reporter:
“Hammer was like a family, a very talented family… with a wonderful atmosphere on the set and a wonderful sense of humour,” said Shelley, who born Barbara Kowin in London in 1932.
“When I first started doing Hammer, all the so-called classic actors looked down on the horror film. All the other things I did, nobody remembers those. But the horror films, I’m very grateful to them because they built me a fan base, and I’m very touched that people will come and ask for my autograph. If you went to see a [Hammer] film in the cinema, the gasps were interspersed with giggles because people were giggling at themselves for being frightened, they were frightening themselves; and this is what made Hammer very special.”
She starred in more than 100 films and TV series across her career, including Village of the Damned, The Saint, Man in the Dark, Hazel, The Man from U.N.C.L.E., The Avengers, Crown Court, Doctor Who, EastEnders and Uncle Silas.
#Rest in Power, you gorgeous Gorgon.