The Ghosts Of Bela Lugosi & Boris Karloff!

As is well-known, Bela Lugosi was buried in his cape, tuxedo, and wearing his Dracula crest ring after a career in movies, none of which came close to the fame brought to him as Dracula.
In 1927, Lugosi, who had emigrated from Hungary to his political affiliations, opened on Broadway in Dracula and played the infamous count for 265 performances. In 1931, Lugosi starred in the film version of Dracula, replacing the late Lon Chaney, Jr., for whom the rights had been originally purchased.

Lugosi only made $500 a week for a seven week shoot, a ridiculously low figure even then. But Dracula both made him a star and typecast him forever at nearly 50 years of age. He made dozens of movies, many of them regrettably bad, but some of them quite good though they may not be well-remembered today.

Martin Landau gave an Academy Award-winning performance as Lugosi in Ed Wood, the Johnny Depp biopic about the director of the abysmal Plan 9 From Outer Space which notoriously included casual footage shot of Lugosi at his home before his death. Landau would observe that no matter how bad a movie might be, Lugosi’s mere presence in the cast brought some stature to the production.

Following a lifetime of career ups and downs, five wives, and a lengthy morphine addiction stemming from a World War I injury he finally kicked, Lugosi died of a heart attack in his bed at his Los Angeles home on August 18, 1956.

And there’s the strange story connected with his burial. It isn’t a very dramatic story, but it is a terrific story.

As the Lugosi funeral procession advanced towards Holy Cross Cemetery in Culver City, the driver found the horses drawing Lugosi’s coffin suddenly fighting him. The driver wanted them to turn right, but the horses instead drew the hearse left, across Vine Street’s oncoming traffic and down Hollywood Boulevard.

It turned out that it was down Hollywood Boulevard that Lugosi took daily on his way to buy cigars, cigarettes, and the daily newspapers.

The driver was unable to explain what had happened.


Boris Karloff took the job Lugosi turned down as Frankenstein (1931), and, as with Lugosi, his performance made him a star while typecasting him.

Born in London in 1887 as William Henry Pratt, Karloff trained for the British foreign service, but wound up in Canada in 1909, working there as a farmhand until joining a touring stage company. In Hollywood, he drove trucks while appearing as villains in 40 silent movies until Frankenstein came along at age 44. From there, numerous roles followed in movies, on stage…most notably as homicidal Cousin Jonathan in Arsenic and Old Lace who killed one victim because his plastic surgery made him look like Boris Karloff…and on teleivision where he had his own series, Thriller, featuring stories of the macabre and as narrator of How The Grinch Stole Christmas (1966).

Like Lugosi, there were many minor films.

Karloff passed away in 1969. His body was cremated

His home at the time was a cottage in Bramshot, Hampshire called Roundabout. Roundabout came to be identified as being haunted by the occasional appearance of Boris Karloff’s gentle ghost, the most famous of Bramshot’s many hauntings.


About Andrew

Co-founder & lead investigator of Paranormal Encounters. I've experienced the paranormal all my life, having encountered ghosts, angels and demons. I live in a haunted house and when not exploring and researching the unknown, I enjoy single malt Scotch whisky & potato chips (though not necessarily at the same time).