IMDb > The Screaming Skull (1958)
The Screaming Skull
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The Screaming Skull (1958) More at IMDbPro »

Photos (See all 15 | slideshow) Videos (see all 3)
The Screaming Skull -- A newlywed couple arrives at the home of the husband's late wife, where the gardens have been maintained by a gardener faithful to the dead woman's memory. Soon eerie events lead the new wife to think she is going out of her mind.
The Screaming Skull -- The wife of a greedy husband (trying to drive her to suicide so that he can inherit her money) comes face to face with screaming skulls... appearing everywhere.


User Rating:
3.3/10   2,294 votes »
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Down 9% in popularity this week. See why on IMDbPro.
John Kneubuhl (written by)
View company contact information for The Screaming Skull on IMDbPro.
Release Date:
January 1958 (USA) See more »
FREE!! We guarantee to bury you without charge if you die of fright during SCREAMING SKULL! See more »
A newly married couple arrives at the home of the husband's late wife, where the gardens have been maintained by a gardener faithful to the dead woman's memory. Soon, eerie events lead the new wife to think she's losing her mind. Full summary » | Full synopsis »
Plot Keywords:
User Reviews:
GREAT horror flick See more (105 total) »


  (in credits order) (complete, awaiting verification)

Directed by
Alex Nicol 
Writing credits
John Kneubuhl (written by)

Produced by
John Coots .... associate producer
John Kneubuhl .... producer
Thomas F. Woods .... executive producer (as T. Frank Woods)
Original Music by
Ernest Gold 
Cinematography by
Floyd Crosby (director of photography)
Film Editing by
Betty J. Lane  (as Betty Jane Lane)
Makeup Department
Donald W. Roberson .... makeup artist (as Don Roberson)
Second Unit Director or Assistant Director
Maurice Vaccarino .... assistant director
Sound Department
Al Overton .... sound
Mandine Rogne .... sound editor
Camera and Electrical Department
Charles Hannawalt .... chief grip (as Chuck Hanawalt)
John Millman .... lighting supervisor (as John Milman)
Kenneth Peach .... second unit photographer (as Kenny Peach)
Editorial Department
Florence Williamson .... assistant editor
Music Department
Ernest Gold .... conductor
Jerry Roberts .... music editor (as Gerald Roberts)
Other crew
Betty Fancher .... script supervisor
Crew believed to be complete

Production CompaniesDistributorsOther Companies

Additional Details

Also Known As:
68 min
Aspect Ratio:
1.85 : 1 See more »
Sound Mix:
Mono (Ryder Sound Services)
France:U | UK:X (original rating) | UK:PG (re-rating) (2005) | USA:Unrated | West Germany:16

Did You Know?

Though it is never credited, the film is based on Francis Marion Crawford's classic horror story of the same title, first published around 1906. Interestingly, Crawford's inspiration for the tale, in turn, came from the folklore surrounding the so-called "screaming skull" that was kept on display at Bettiscomb Manor in Dorset, England. The actual skull that inspired both the story and the movie is said to be that of a black slave whose request for burial in his native country was denied following his death and was subsequently followed by strange occurrences and unexplainable shrieking noises that emanated from the wooden box in which the skull was kept.See more »
Factual errors: Real human skulls are not connected to the jaw bones.See more »
Narrator:"The Screaming Skull" is a motion picture that reaches its climax in shocking horror. It's impact is so terrifying that it may have an unforeseen effect. It may *kill* you!See more »
Movie Connections:
Featured in Ernest Scared Stupid (1991)See more »
Symphony Fantastique - Dream of a Witche's SabbathSee more »


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10 out of 15 people found the following review useful.
GREAT horror flick, 3 April 2002

I can't believe the low rating this great film has gotten!

I remember watching "The Screaming Skull" on the late show (when TV actually showed decent stuff) and it scared the living hell outta me. It disappeared from TV, and of course years later having found it on video, it's not gonna scare me under the covers but it's still one of the best and most clever horror films of the 50's.

The plot is good enough - the ghost of a man's first wife haunts his new wife in their super-large house. But the film has a lot of great horror elements that work in its favor - the big house, the creepy house grounds, the grave on the grounds, the path through the woods area, the "odd" person (the gardener), the howling wind, the noisy windows, the scary painting, and much more, especially the skull that keeps on showing up all over the place.

The husband is the guy who played the husband in "50-Foot Woman" and he's just as good here. All the other actors/characters are just fine (there aren't many as the whole film takes place at the house), especially Mickey the Gardener, who loved the first wife (as a friend) and still talks to her as if she was alive.

The whole film has great horror atmosphere, one of the best instances ever of such I believe. There are many genuinely creepy scenes in the film, with the topper being the final incredible sequence, especially when the husband hears the knock on the front door. The look on his face is absolutely priceless as he goes to answer the door. Even after seeing the film so many times, when that door knocks, and the husband's face shows pure fear because he probably knows what's behind it, and he slowly goes to answer it, still gives me shudders!

It's great that "The Screaming Skull" is on DVD. This film definitely deserves a lot better than the films it often gets lumped in with.

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Message Boards

Discuss this movie with other users on IMDb message board for The Screaming Skull (1958)
Recent Posts (updated daily)User
Watched this again...........brings back fond memories. douggman99
well constructed scary little movie mr-murph
This movie was on Mystery Science Theater 3000 Kdude9000
oh c'mon a 2.8 average? neuronboy
Same music in Kubrick's The Shining Stuart Gardner
I didn't imagine it! jrfug74
See more »


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