“The Tell-Tale Heart” narrated by James Mason/Christopher Walken reads “The Raven”

Posted October 31st, 2011 under Animation, Books, Videos


Certainly the right video for today’s holiday — the 1953 animated film version of Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart,” narrated by James Mason. Upon its release, the film was given a bizarre reception. In the UK, the British Board of Film Censors gave the film an “x” rating, deeming it unsuitable for adult audiences. Meanwhile, “The Tell-Tale Heart” was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Animated Short Film in the US, though it ultimately lost to a Disney production.

The Tell-Tale Heart is a 1953 American animated short film directed by Ted Parmelee and narrated by James Mason. The screenplay by Bill Scott and Fred Grable is based on the 1843 short story of the same title by Edgar Allan Poe.

The plot focuses on a murderer whose increasing guilt leads him to believe he can hear his victim’s heart still beating beneath the floorboards where he buried him. Seen through the eyes of the nameless narrator, the surrealistic images in the film help convey his descent into madness.

Paul Julian served as both designer and color artist for film, and Pat Matthews was the principal animator.

In May 1953, pre-production started on The Tell-Tale Heart, which originally was intended to be a 3-D film. However, it is not known whether or not the film was animated in this fashion, and it was not released in 3D if it was. There is no reference to 3D in a technical trade review. Furthermore, the leaders on original prints of the film do not indicate it ever was part of a pair of 3D prints, typical of all other 3D pictures.

More at Wikipedia.

Image above taken from a different animated version you can find out about over here. Trailer below.

And then we have another small Halloween treat — your favorite actor, Christopher Walken, reading another classic Poe story, The Raven.

Bonus: Lady Gaga’s Poker Face read by Christopher Walken

From “Friday Night with Jonathan Ross – BBC One”

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