Vampira (1974 film)
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|Directed by||Clive Donner|
|Produced by||Jack Wiener|
|Written by||Jeremy Lloyd|
|Music by||David Whitaker|
|Cinematography||Anthony B. Richmond|
|Edited by||Bill Butler|
World Film Services
Vampira (also known as Old Dracula) is a 1974 British comedy horror film directed by Clive Donner and starring David Niven and Teresa Graves. It spoofs the vampire genre. Following the success of Young Frankenstein, Vampira was re-titled Old Dracula for release in the United States in an attempt to cash in on its success.
Count Dracula is an old vampire who, because of his advanced age, is forced to host tours of his castle to get new victims. In an attempt to revive his long-lost love, Vampira, Dracula sets out to collect blood from the bevy of Playboy Playmates living at his castle. However, one of the Playmates whose blood is drained is black, turning the revived Vampira into a black woman.
Dracula enthralls the hapless Marc to collect blood from three white women in hopes of restoring Vampira's original skin color. Dracula transfuses the blood into her but she is unchanged; however, her bite turns Dracula black. Marc and his love Angela race to destroy Dracula but are taken aback upon seeing Dracula's new skin tone. Their surprise gives the vampires time to slip away to catch a flight to Rio for Carnival.
- David Niven as Count Dracula
- Teresa Graves as Countess Vampira
- Nicky Henson as Marc
- Jennie Linden as Angela
- Linda Hayden as Helga
- Bernard Bresslaw as Pottinger
- Andrea Allan as Eve
- Veronica Carlson as Ritva
- Minah Bird as Rose
- Freddie Jones as Gilmore
- Chris Sandford as Milton
- Frank Thornton as Mr. King
- Peter Bayliss as Maltravers
- Cathie Shirriff as Nancy
- Aimi MacDonald as Woman in hotel room
- Patrick Newell as Man in hotel room
- Kenneth Cranham as Paddy, the Delinquent
- Carol Cleveland as Jane, the Delinquent's Victim
- Luan Peters as Pottinger's Secretary
- Nadim Sawalha as Airline Representative
- Marcia Fox as Air Hostess
- Penny Irving as Playboy Bunny
- Hoima McDonald as Playboy Bunny
- Nicola Austin as Playboy Bunny
- David Rowlands as Drunk
- Ben Aris as Policeman
The film was released theatrically in the United States by American International Pictures in 1975, under the title Old Dracula in an attempt to cash in on the success of director Mel Brooks 1974 classic horror movie spoof Young Frankenstein. Exhibitors frequently paired Old Dracula on a double bill with Young Frankenstein.
Film critic Roger Ebert gave the film one star in his December 15, 1975 review, describing it as a mess with only Niven being a highlight, describing the film as a "depressing exercise" due to not being to the standard of British horror films of the time and feeling dated to the previous decade.
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