The Mummy's Curse (1945)

60 mins | Horror | 16 February 1945

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HISTORY

The working title of this film was The Mummy's Return . According to a Dec 1943 HR news item, Ted Richmond was orginally set to produce the film. The film contains footage from two earlier Universal films, The Mummy and The Mummy's Hand (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.2980 and F3.2982). Although it picks up where the plot of Universal's previous "Kharis" film, The Mummy's Ghost (See Entry) ends, with "Kharis" and "Ananka" disappearing into the swamps, The Mummy's Curse is supposed to take place twenty-five years later, in the late 1960s. This was the fourth and final Universal film featuring Kharis, the Mummy. For additional information on this series, consult the Series Index and the entry for The Mummy (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.2980). Modern sources add the following names to the crew credits: Contr wrt Ted Richmond; Cam op William Dodds; Prop Ernie Smith and Eddie Case; Makeup Jack P. Pierce ; Gowns Vera West; Lon Chaney's doubles Eddie Parker and Bob Pepper; and Stunts Carey Loftin and Teddy ... More Less

The working title of this film was The Mummy's Return . According to a Dec 1943 HR news item, Ted Richmond was orginally set to produce the film. The film contains footage from two earlier Universal films, The Mummy and The Mummy's Hand (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.2980 and F3.2982). Although it picks up where the plot of Universal's previous "Kharis" film, The Mummy's Ghost (See Entry) ends, with "Kharis" and "Ananka" disappearing into the swamps, The Mummy's Curse is supposed to take place twenty-five years later, in the late 1960s. This was the fourth and final Universal film featuring Kharis, the Mummy. For additional information on this series, consult the Series Index and the entry for The Mummy (see AFI Catalog of Feature Films, 1931-40 ; F3.2980). Modern sources add the following names to the crew credits: Contr wrt Ted Richmond; Cam op William Dodds; Prop Ernie Smith and Eddie Case; Makeup Jack P. Pierce ; Gowns Vera West; Lon Chaney's doubles Eddie Parker and Bob Pepper; and Stunts Carey Loftin and Teddy Mangean . More Less

SOURCE CITATIONS
SOURCE
DATE
PAGE
Box Office
20 Jan 1945.
---
Daily Variety
20 Dec 44
p. 4.
Film Daily
20 Dec 44
p. 4.
Hollywood Reporter
27 Dec 43
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
21 Jul 44
p. 1.
Hollywood Reporter
10 Aug 44
p. 3.
Hollywood Reporter
20 Dec 44
p. 4.
Motion Picture Herald Product Digest
23 Dec 44
pp. 2238-39.
New York Times
31 Mar 45
p. 16.
Variety
20 Dec 44
p. 17.
CAST
PRODUCTION CREDITS
NAME
PARENT COMPANY
DISTRIBUTION COMPANY
NAME
CREDITED AS
CREDIT
DIRECTORS
Asst dir
PRODUCERS
Exec prod
Assoc prod
WRITERS
Orig story and adpt
Orig story and adpt
PHOTOGRAPHY
Dir of photog
2d cam
ART DIRECTORS
Art dir
Art dir
FILM EDITOR
SET DECORATORS
Set dec
MUSIC
Mus dir
SOUND
Dir of sd
[Sd] tech
Re-rec and eff mixer
Mus mixer
VISUAL EFFECTS
Spec photog
SOURCES
SONGS
"Hey, You," music by Oliver Drake, lyrics by Frank Orth.
DETAILS
Series:
Alternate Title:
The Mummy's Return
Release Date:
16 February 1945
Production Date:
26 July--early August 1944
Copyright Claimant:
Universal Pictures Co., inc.
Copyright Date:
20 November 1944
Copyright Number:
LP12973
Physical Properties:
Sound
Western Electric Recording
Black and White
Duration(in mins):
60
Length(in feet):
5,413
Country:
United States
Language:
English
PCA No:
10432
Passed by NBR:
No
SYNOPSIS

A group of Cajuns are worried about the government clearing of a local swamp, as they believe the marsh lands are haunted by the mummy Kharis, who carried the reincarnation of his ancient love, Princess Ananka, into its depths twenty-five years earlier. Pat Walsh, the superintendent in charge of the swamp clearing, is met by two representatives of the Scripps Museum, archaeologists Dr. James Halsey and Dr. Ilzor Zandaab, who ask for his help in excavating the remains of Kharis and Ananka. Soon thereafter, the murdered body of one of Pat's workmen is discovered in the swamps, and Halsey finds what seems to be Kharis' empty grave nearby. Unknown to Halsey, Zandaab, a high priest in the ancient religion of Amon-Ra, has unearthed Kharis with the help of Ragheb, a local workman, and now plans to re-animate the mummy with tanna leaves so that Kharis can recover Ananka's body and they both can be returned to their ancient tombs in Egypt. After Kharis is re-animated by Zandaab inside an abandoned monastery, the mummy kills Michael, the self-appointed caretaker of the chapel. Later, in the midst of the swamp's excavation, an old and withered Ananka emerges from the marshes, but is transformed into a beautiful, youthful woman upon the touch of the sun's rays. She is then discovered by Cajun Joe, a foreman, and he takes the amnesiac woman to Tante Berthe's café. Ragheb, however, hears Ananka calling Kharis' name and rushes to inform Zandaab. Kharis is then sent to the café to reclaim his love, but Ananka does not recognize him and runs away. She faints near the roadway, where she is ... +


A group of Cajuns are worried about the government clearing of a local swamp, as they believe the marsh lands are haunted by the mummy Kharis, who carried the reincarnation of his ancient love, Princess Ananka, into its depths twenty-five years earlier. Pat Walsh, the superintendent in charge of the swamp clearing, is met by two representatives of the Scripps Museum, archaeologists Dr. James Halsey and Dr. Ilzor Zandaab, who ask for his help in excavating the remains of Kharis and Ananka. Soon thereafter, the murdered body of one of Pat's workmen is discovered in the swamps, and Halsey finds what seems to be Kharis' empty grave nearby. Unknown to Halsey, Zandaab, a high priest in the ancient religion of Amon-Ra, has unearthed Kharis with the help of Ragheb, a local workman, and now plans to re-animate the mummy with tanna leaves so that Kharis can recover Ananka's body and they both can be returned to their ancient tombs in Egypt. After Kharis is re-animated by Zandaab inside an abandoned monastery, the mummy kills Michael, the self-appointed caretaker of the chapel. Later, in the midst of the swamp's excavation, an old and withered Ananka emerges from the marshes, but is transformed into a beautiful, youthful woman upon the touch of the sun's rays. She is then discovered by Cajun Joe, a foreman, and he takes the amnesiac woman to Tante Berthe's café. Ragheb, however, hears Ananka calling Kharis' name and rushes to inform Zandaab. Kharis is then sent to the café to reclaim his love, but Ananka does not recognize him and runs away. She faints near the roadway, where she is found by Halsey and Betty Walsh, Pat's secretary and niece. Meanwhile, Tante is discovered strangled to death, with ancient mold around her neck. Later, Ananka becomes Halsey's assistant, and the archaeologist is amazed by her unexplained expertise in ancient Egypt. Upon seeing Zandaab, however, Ananka goes into a trance and begins calling for Kharis, but the trance is quickly broken when she is shaken by Halsey. That night, Kharis once again tries to reclaim Ananka, but when she makes her escape, the mummy kills Dr. Cooper, the local physician. Seeing Ananka as the common link in the string of murders, Halsey and the workmen search the swamps for the missing woman. During the search, Cajun Joe is strangled by Kharis. Afterward, Ananka returns to the worker's camp, where she seeks refuge in Betty's tent. This time, Kharis manages to capture his love and goes back to the deserted monastery, where Zandaab feeds Ananka the sacred tanna leaves. Betty and the lustful Ragheb then arrive, but when Zandaab insists on killing the innocent Betty to preserve the secret of Kharis and Ananka, Ragheb stabs the high priest to death. Halsey then arrives at the monastery, where he and Ragheb fight over Betty. As Ragheb is about to kill Halsey, Kharis enters and, enraged by the death of Zandaab, tears down a wing of the monastery in an attempt to get at the murderous Ragheb. Both Kharis and Ragheb are buried in the rubble, and Ananka's mummified body is later found by Halsey and Pat. Halsey then makes plans to unearth Kharis and return both mummies to the Scripps Museum, and publicly announces his romantic intentions toward Betty. +

Legend
Viewed by AFI
Partially Viewed
Offscreen Credit
Name Occurs Before Title
AFI Life Achievement Award

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The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.