Cassandra Peterson (born
Born in Manhattan, Kansas, Peterson grew up in
Shortly after her marriage to Mark Pierson (now her business manager) in 1981, she created the character Elvira after a successful audition to be a horror movie show hostess and was the first such host to be nationally syndicated. One of the first successful horror hostesses, Vampira (Maila Nurmi), later unsuccessfully sued Peterson over character rights.
In 1988, Peterson starred as her flirtatious creation opposite Edie McClurg and Jeff Conaway in the comedy: Elvira, Mistress of the Dark. Critic Leonard Maltin, in his 2005 Movie Guide, gives the film a "Bomb" rating, or no stars on a scale of one to four (four being best). The film was a modest success however as teenage boys everywhere came out in droves to ogle Peterson's ample bosom.
Elvira has become a symbol of Halloween, and owns the trademark to her wig and costume. She also sang "Monster Rap" and "Haunted House" on the Elvira's Monster Hits album.
Elvira also featured in three computer games developed by Horror Soft and Flair Software and a pinball game, as well as several comic book series. Marvel published an adaptation of her first film, while DC Comics published a short-lived Elvira's House of Mystery series featuring Elvira as a host similar to the EC Comics Crypt Keeper. The most successful Elvira comic series, however, has been the comedy/adventure Elvira, Mistress of the Dark, published by Claypool Comics since 1993.
She has been parodied in The Simpsons as movie hostess, Boobarella: "Then you can see more of my boooobs! Booooooobs!" The Grim Adventures of Billy and Mandy also feature an obvious tribute in the form of Grim's favourite TV host, Atrocia.
This Cassandra Peterson Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub