Monday, May 6, 2013

Only now does it occur to me... BLOOD BATH

Only now does it occur to me... that Sid Haig has played basically every ethnicity, at one time or another.

BLOOD BATH is a fairly terrible, but fairly watchable Roger Corman clusterfuck with an exceptionally convoluted production history that involved a Yugoslavian spy thriller, a Venice Beach-set vampire flick, co-financing by Roger Corman and Stephanie Rothman, co-direction by the legendary Jack Hill (COFFY, THE BIG BIRD CAGE, SPIDER BABY, FOXY BROWN) and Rothman, music (predictably) stolen from DEMENTIA 13, and all sorts of other random and bewildering things.  You can read about the absurdly labyrinthine twists and turns of the production here.

Also, it features one of the worst-looking vampires ever:

But that's not the point of this entry– the point is the hilarious spectrum of quasi-ethnic roles that have been played by Sid Haig.  Here, he plays a beatnik named "Abdul the Arab."
 Haig (far right) in a well-constructed community theater vest)

Haig (second from left) placing a close 2nd in the scene-chewing contest of this particular tableau

From what I've read, he's actually Armenian-American, but in other fine films he's played Hispanic (THE FIREBRAND, IRON HORSE, THE FLYING NUN, CHE!, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE), Native American (DANIEL BOONE), Italian (THE MAN FROM U.N.C.L.E., DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER, MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE), Turkish (GET SMART, OHARA), Arabian (BLOOD BATH, THE DON IS DEAD, SWITCH, FANTASY ISLAND, MACGUYVER),  Russian (MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE), South American Indian (THE FORBIDDEN DANCE IS LAMBADA), Ambiguous Asian (BRING 'EM BACK ALIVE), and just plain "Swarthy" (MISFITS OF SCIENCE).  And I'm certain there's dozens I've missed or haven't seen.  Whew! Well done, Mr. Haig– you truly are a one man "It's a small world (after all)."

–Sean Gill

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