When you initially think of huge names in horror there are some true standouts and one of the biggest from the 60s was Herschell Gordon Lewis, the “Godfather of Gore.” An icon in the genre which we’ve lost at the age of 87 is sadly another great who has passed in 2016. While not everyone is instantly familiar with his work these days, Lewis is credit for creating “Splatter Film” and you can tell by his title it was just a bloody mess of a good time.
Entertainingly enough, Lewis was more well known in the marketing field than for having created an entire subgenre within Horror having been one of the few who was inducted into the Direct Marketing Association’s Hall of Fame as well as authoring 32 books on marketing.
He was just as likely to be invited to a conference on copywriting as he was to a horror convention.
From ‘Two Thousand Maniacs! ‘ to ‘The Gore Gore Girls’, Lewis made a name for himself in creating a genre that still persists today. His early start showed his budgetary constraints but still had audiences coming back for more. In fact, he still has an anthology film titled ‘Herschell Gordon Lewis’ BloodMania’ in post-production that is still likely to be released.
The cause of Lewis’ passing is unknown though at 87 his age would have easily been a factor. He gave a new form of horror to the world which has spawned a multitude of fans and creative followers which still resonate with audiences of his craft today.
His prime work was from the 60s to the early 70s where he released classics such as ‘Blood Feast’, ‘The Gruesome Twosome’, and so many more. He took a break from that point to return to his marketing career but came back in 2002 to give us ‘Blood Feast 2: All U Can Eat’ as a sequel to what is often thought of as the first splatter film to have been released and the one which truly gave birth to the genre.
Our thoughts go out to Lewis’ family and friends for the tragic loss that they are experiencing and horror fans across the world will miss this icon of the craft.
Stuart Conover is an author, blogger, and all around geek. When not busy being a father and husband he tries to spend as much time as possible immersed in comic books, science fiction, and horror! Would you like to know more? Follow him on Twitter!