Tuesday, August 15, 2006

II. THE ITALIAN HERCULES MOVIES 1957-1964

* Hercules (Le Fatiche di Ercole/ The Labors of Hercules, 1957) starring Steve Reeves

* Hercules Unchained (Ercole e la regina di Lidia/ Hercules and the Queen of Lydia, 1959) starring Steve Reeves

* Goliath and the Dragon (La Vendetta di Ercole/ The Revenge of Hercules, 1960) starring Mark Forest (this Hercules film was transformed into a "Goliath" movie before it was distributed in the USA odd as the Hercules ‘umbrella’ would’ve brought more dollars?)

* Hercules Vs The Hydra (Gli Amori di Ercole/ The Loves of Hercules, 1960) starring Mickey Hargitay & Jayne Mansfield

* Hercules and the Captive Women (Ercole alla conquista di Atlantide/ Hercules at the Conquest of Atlantis, aka Hercules and the Haunted Women) 1961, starring Reg Park

* Hercules in the Haunted World (Ercole al centro della terra/ Hercules at the Center of the Earth) 1961 (directed by Mario Bava) starring Reg Park

* Hercules in the Vale of Woe (Maciste contro Ercole nella valle dei guai/ Maciste Vs. Hercules in the Vale of Woe) 1961, starring Frank Gordon as Hercules (this was made as a semi-comedy/ satire on peplums)

* Ulysses Vs. The Son of Hercules (Ulisse contro Ercole/ Ulysses Vs. Hercules) 1962 starring Mike Lane as Hercules

* The Fury of Hercules (La Furia di Ercole/ The Fury of Hercules, aka The Fury of Samson) 1962, starring Brad Harris

* Hercules, Samson and Ulysses (Ercole sfida Sansone/ Hercules Challenges Samson) 1963, starring Kirk Morris as Hercules

* Hercules Vs. the Moloch (Ercole contro Molock/ Hercules Vs. Moloch, aka The Conquest of Mycene) 1963, starring Gordon Scott

* Son of Hercules in the Land of Darkness (Ercole l'invincibile/ Hercules, the Invincible) 1964, starring Dan Vadis (this was originally a Hercules film that was retitled into a "Son of Hercules" film so that it could be included in the "Sons of Hercules" TV syndication package)

* Hercules Vs. The Giant Warrior (il Trionfo di Ercole/ The Triumph of Hercules, aka Hercules and the Ten Avengers) 1964, starring Dan Vadis


* Hercules Against
Rome (Ercole contro Roma, 1964) starring Alan Steel

* Hercules Against the Sons of the Sun (Ercole contro i figli del sole, 1964)starring Mark Forest

* Hercules and the Tyrants of Babylon (Ercole contro i tiranni di Babilonia, 1964) starring Peter Lupus

* Samson and the Mighty Challenge (Ercole, Sansone, Maciste e Ursus: gli invincibili, aka Combate dei Gigantes) 1964, starring Alan Steel as Hercules (this was more of a comedy/ satire on peplums & featured Hercules prominently in the plot)

* Hercules and the Princess of Troy (no Italian title, aka "Hercules vs. the Sea Monster", 1965) starring Gordon Scott (this 48-minute Italian/U.S. co-production was made as a pilot for a Charles Band-produced TV series that never materialized)

* Hercules, the Avenger (Sfida dei giganti/Challenge of the Giants, 1965)starring Reg Park (this was a cheaply made-for-TV quickie that consisted mostly of re-edited stock footage from 2 earlier Hercules films, “Hercules and the Captive Women” and “Hercules in the Haunted World”.)

Some of the other Hercules adventures were not Hercules movies in their native Italy and were marketed to cash in on the initials success mainly in the United States were;

* "Hercules, Prisoner of Evil" was actually a retitled Ursus film.

* "Hercules and the Black Pirate" and "Hercules and the Treasure of the Incas" were both retitled Samson movies (the second film not even being a sword and sandal/peplum movie).

* "Hercules and the Masked Rider" was actually a retitled Goliath movie.

* "Hercules Against the Moon Men", "Hercules Against the Barbarians", "Hercules Against the Mongols" and "Hercules of the Desert" were all originally Maciste films.

None of these were connected to Hercules in anyway when seen in their original Italian Language, the same was also for the ‘Sons of Hercules’ movies which were syndicated films on television deemed too inferior for the large screen.

These were known under totally different titles and although can be heard referred to under their original myth hero title were still ‘marketable’ under ‘The Sons of Hercules’ banner.

Due to the scarceity of the originals I have no comparison with their ‘re-packings’ but if I know as much about distribution and how it works as I do, I bet some of these were/are cut to pieces and re-filmed credit wise.

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