Vincent Price's Birthday Month Concludes with a Visit to the "House on Haunted Hill"!

Posted on May 28, 2022

Tonight on MeTV, we wind up our celebration of Vincent Price’s birthday month-just one day past his actual birthdate- with the beloved collaboration between Vincent and that master of ballyhoo, William Castle- in a tale that mixes a ghost story with domestic tension and a group of needy subjects who seek to gain wealth- without losing their lives! It’s the original 1959 version of “House on Haunted Hill”!

We join a group of people, none acquainted with each other, as they make their way to a home rented by Frederick Loren- a millionaire- and his sultry wife Annabelle. These five folks have been invited by Frederick to an unusual party- and we learn that they all have one thing in common-the desperate need for money. Frederick offers them the chance to get some- $10,000 each, in fact- with one stipulation- they must spend the night sealed up in this house, from midnight through to the next morning. It sounds simple enough- until it is revealed that this place is haunted by treacherous ghosts of those murdered here-who seem more than willing to add to their number!

Added tension comes from the fact Frederick and Annabelle are not exactly a coosome twosome- Frederick thinks that his wife tried to poison him to gain control of his wealth, while Annabelle (actually his fourth wife!) suspects that he did in his previous wives, and that he is planning something sinister for her with this sleepover party.

Among the guests for this odd game of “Survivor” is the house’s actual owner, Watson Pritchard, who relates the haunted history of the place- indeed, his own brother is among the spirits supposedly inhabiting the house. He gives the party a tour of the premises, including a dungeon-like cellar that includes its own acid pit- reputed to be the site of one of the murders. Before long, a few apparitions appear, causing some panic among the already uneasy guests.

Frederick lays down the contest rules, provides each guest with a gun for protection (against ghosts?!), and gives the option that anyone who doesn’t want to play may leave. Unfortunately, the caretaker couple of the house leave early, and lock the house up BEFORE the midnight starting point- leaving everyone stuck in the house, like it or not!

Thus begins the quest to survive until morning and cash in- as the guests encounter more strange occurrences and what appears to be a death by suicide- or was it murder? Suspicions arise that one of the group in the house may indeed be a murderer- as terror and treachery stand in the way of survival!

We’ll have background information on our cast and the production, and talk about the gimmick Castle invented for this film- a process he called “Emergo”! We’ll also bring you a song, promotion for a questionable mortgage finance company, a vintage segment with some clips from the film in Svensurround, and more. Though this film is widely seen since it is has fallen into public domain (you may even have seen it in annotated form a few weeks back with Sventoonie), we have taken the extra step of obtaining a digitally restored print that looks great.

“House on Haunted Hill” opens its doors to you tonight at 8 pm eastern/ pacific, 7 central time. As usual, you can join in on the “Live-Tweet” posting during the show on Twitter- please add the hashtag #svengoolie to your posts. In the Chicago viewing area, viewers get an encore showing of Price’s encore appearance as Anton Phibes in “Dr. Phibes Rises Again” at 11 am on our main local station, CW26.

As promised, we have some new items in our Svengoolie store, perfect for Dads and grads- new Sven caps, including the black camo design- and some really fashionable polo shirts, with the Sven logo, in a variety of colors! Order NOW if you want to snag some as Father’s Day gifts!

We hope you have a great Memorial Day weekend- let’s not forget that the point of the holiday is to honor the men and women who have given their lives protecting our country.

And tonight, MeTV invites you to spend the night with me, Vincent Price and a gallery of ghosts! (Sorry, you will NOT get $10,000 for staying through the entire show!)

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 during show

Geo 8 months ago
Geo 8 months ago
This comment has been removed.
1MikeM 8 months ago
well that's it for me, time for go to sleep
1MikeM 8 months ago
...and dat was da House on Haunted Hill...and dat's da name a dat tune
FKrueger 8 months ago
What is this Sesame Street now?
Shayla FKrueger 8 months ago
Shayla 8 months ago
I’m clearly faster among those on right now!!
vettenoir Shayla 8 months ago
Not me!
Shayla 8 months ago
Soooooo…… how was y’all’s day??
MADave Shayla 8 months ago
You already know mine no need to repeat it
vettenoir Shayla 8 months ago
Trying to distract the old folks so they don't switch forums? 🤣🤣🤣
Shayla vettenoir 8 months ago
Shayla MADave 8 months ago
Are you sure you want to delete this comment?