Nitrate film fell out of widespread use due to the how flammable it is, but anyone who’s seen an actual nitrate print knows that its quality is impossible to fully reproduce. Enthusiasts of the long-gone format were excited over the weekend by the discovery of the original uncut trailer for 1939’s “Son of Frankenstein,” not least because it’s said to be taken from alternate takes and deleted scenes. Watch it below.
Rowland V. Lee directed the film, the third entry in the “Frankenstein” mythos produced by Universal. Basil Rathbone, Boris Karloff and Béla Lugosi star in the picture, with narrator Charles Frederick Lindsley singing their praises throughout the two-and-a-half minute trailer: there’s Karloff “rising from the past to spread new terror,” for instance, while Lugosi is “sinister, mysterious, evil.”
“Son of Frankenstein” was an immense success, making beaucoup bucks and helping revive Universal’s monster division. The trailer was uploaded by one Jonathan Froes, whose YouTube channel is full of similar discovers from way back when.