The James Whale Nexus

Portrait of James Whale

"Hollywood is just too marvelous. One feels the footprints of all the immortals are here, but has a terrible feeling that they are in sand and won't last when civilization comes this way."

- James Whale, 1929

Links to other sections of the Nexus:

The Man -- The Actor -- The Stage Director

The Film Director -- The Artist -- Resources and Links


Whale News

Cool Link: CINEFILES Director's List. Museum Informatics Project, University of California, Berkeley

4/2/02: moved site from Geocities to Eskimo. Hope you like not seeing the nasty GeoCities popups anymore.

12/16/01: moved a bunch of stuff around. Added color scans of some of Whale's paintings under the previously blank section titled The Artist.

I'm still surprised that the Whale renaissance I expected in the wake of Gods and Monsters has not yet materialized. I'd put Kiss Before the Mirror and Remember Last Night? at the top of the 1930s list of great stylistic pictures. Why are they only accessible via video bootlegs from 16mm collector prints?

Rumor has it that Journey's End is going to be screened from a 35mm print at one of the vintage film festivals in 2002.This would well and truly rock as I have only seen it on a bootleg video copy.

This site is also now accessible at the URL Isn't that cool?

Archived news.


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With the thunderous acclaim surrounding Gods and Monsters, numerous web sites have sprung up relating to the film and to Whale himself. Cataloging them all seems futile. The best place to start, however, is the Official Site, which includes a list of awards, photos, filmmaker bios, the theatrical trailer, web links, and even a web shop where you can buy clothing sporting the Gods and Monsters logo.

Another invaluable resource is Sir Ian McKellen's Official Home Page. If you are unfamiliar with Sir Ian's life and work, these delightful records should be your constant study. He's a fascinating man, and a real Friend of Jimmy besides.

Whale on TV! -- Check to see if a James Whale film is playing on TV this week (courtesy TV Now).

A photo of the James Whale mausoleum at Forest Lawn (Glendale).

James Whale page in the Cabinet of Dr. Casey contains a basic filmography.

James Whale entry in the Internet Movie Database is the definitive basic filmography with all entries hyperlinked to complete cast and crew lists, which in turn are hyperlinked to the participants' other credits, and so on.

Amazon.Com's Father of Frankenstein page includes a rather lukewarm capsule review from the American Library Association.

Bibliography and Other Resources


Bram, Christopher. Father of Frankenstein. Plume Books, 1996.

Brosnan, John. The Horror People. Plume Books, 1977.

Short (6 page), pioneering discussion of Whale's life and the horror pictures.

Curtis, James. James Whale. Scarecrow Pr, 1982. [ISBN: 0810815613]

Curtis, James. James Whale: A New World of Gods and Monsters .Faber and Faber Limited, 1998. [ISBN: 0-571-19285-8]

A reworked and updated version of the earlier Curtis book, which it supercedes.

Gatiss, Mark. James Whale: A Biography of the Would-Be Gentleman. Cassell Academic Publication, 1995. [ISBN: 0304328618]

Jensen, Paul M. The Men Who Made the Monsters. Twayne Publishers, 1996.

Highly insightful analysis of the horror pictures, and a discusion of Whale's life. Excellent observations on how Whale shaped the final form of his films which becomes, then, an analysis of to what extent Whale can genuinely be considered the auteur of the films he directed.

Reed, Ellis. A Journey into Darkness : The Art of James Whale's Horror Films. Ayer Co Pub, 1980. [ISBN: 0405129084]


Curtis, James. LaserDisc audio commentary. The Old Dark House. Analog Left Channel (L1). Image Entertainment, 1995.

Kreuger, Miles. LaserDisc audio commentary. Show Boat. Analog Left Channel (L1). The Voyager Company, 1990.

Stuart, Gloria. LaserDisc audio commentary. The Old Dark House. Analog Right Channel (R2). Image Entertainment, 1995.