Veronica Carlson has died

Veronica Carlson – a very well loved and remembered Hammer Film Star has died. She was born in York on September 18, 1944, and her early life with her parents meant moving around a lot

This was because her father was in the RAF and the family moved to wherever he was stationed – they eventually settled down in High Wycombe, Buckinghamshire.

Although she studied art – and gained a National Diploma in Design – her striking good looks made her a favourite for model photographers.

In 1968 when her picture appeared on the front page of The Daily Mirror she was spotted by Hammer boss James Carreras who was on the lookout for a new star to add glamour to the studio’s third Dracula film, ‘Dracula Has Risen From The Grave

Veronica Carlson impressed during a meeting and was duly cast opposite Christopher Lee reprising his role as Count Dracula
Hammer’s publicity material said “with her naturally blonde hair, peach cream complexion and vivid blue eyes, Veronica might be described as the typical English beauty”

She was also a very accomplished actress and her performance in the film – one of Hammer’s most successful overseas exports – ensured she was remembered as more than just a damsel in distress.
She was immediately cast opposite Hammer’s other big star, Peter Cushing, in Frankenstein Must Be Destroyed.
Although considered one of the best of Hammer’s outings for the Baron, the shooting was not without controversy due to the late addition of a rape scene which was bitterly opposed by Veronica herself, Peter Cushing and even the film’s director Terence Fisher.
Despite her opposition to the scene – which, due to being filmed out of chronological order, meant that her involvement with Peter Cushing’s character seemed ridiculous – even so Hammer cast Veronica in the next Frankenstein film, Horror of Frankenstein – along with Joan Rice who was back on screen after a long film lay-off. It proved to be Joan Rice’s last film. Also in the film and in a leading role, was Kate O Mara

In Horror of Frankenstein Veronica Carlson was Frankenstein’s bride-to-be, Elizabeth, and her leading man was not Peter Cushing, but Ralph Bates who was being groomed by Hammer to take over the role. The film was not a success.

A few years later, Veronica Carlson once again joined forces with Peter Cushing in 1975’s The Ghoul, made by Hammer ‘s associate company Tyburn Films.

When she married in 1974 she moved to America, but was a frequent visitor to the UK where she remained a favourite at cult film conventions until her death.

Veronica Carlson RIGHT with other Hammer Film Stars Ingrid Pitt LEFT
and Caroline Munro Centre

Veronica Carlson did not make many films but she had such an impact – particularly in the Hammer Horror Films that she is well and fondly remembered to film fans

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