Undressing The Legend Of “Elvira!”
I saw a photo of Elvira, and decided to find out more about her – and was I ever glad I did!
Actress Cassandra Peterson was the horror hostess “Elvira, Mistress of the Dark” – a character she created that blew up on Los Angeles television station KHJ-TV.
This macabre character wore a revealing, black, gothic, cleavage-enhancing gown as she hosted “Elvira’s Movie Macabre”, a weekly horror movie presentation.
But Cassandra was much, much more!
Cassandra grew up in Kansas and Colorado, and after graduating high school, Cassandra went to Las Vegas, where she became a showgirl at The Dunes casino.
Cassandra got into the Guinness World Records as the youngest showgirl in the history of Las Vegas. She also played a cameo role in the 1971 James Bond film, “Diamonds Are Forever,” as part of the same show.
Cassandra briefly dated Elvis as well as Singer Tom Jones.
In the early 1970s, she moved to Italy, where she met Director Federico Fellini, who gave her a small role in his 1972 film “Roma”.
In 1979, she joined the Los Angeles improv troupe “The Groundlings,” where Elvira was created.
Peterson’s Elvira character wore a tight-fitting, low-cut black gown, and she spoke with the flippant tone of a California “Valley girl.”
The combination made her a star!
She loved to make jokes about her cleavage, and in an AOL Entertainment News interview, Peterson said:
“I figured out that Elvira is me when I was a teenager. She’s a spastic girl. I just say what I feel and people seem to enjoy it.”
Her popularity reached its zenith with the release of the 1988 feature film “Elvira: Mistress of the Dark!”
Here is the trailer:
Elvira also made a sequel years later, but she appeared in films as Cassandra Peterson as well:
Cassandra co-starred with Pee Wee in his debut film, and starred in “Allan Quatermain and the Lost City of Gold”, released in 1987, along with Richard Chamberlain and a very young Sharon Stone!
Yes, this is Cassandra Peterson BEFORE she was “Elvira!”
During the 1970s, before the “Elvira” character was born, Peterson modeled for several men’s magazines, such as High Society, Man’s Delight, and Modern Man.
After her “Elvira” success, these pictures were published again to capitalize on her TV success…and they are provocative indeed!
Ultimately, she published books, appeared in movies, TV shows, had video games and home videos all with her as “Elvira”…even pinball machines!
I have to give credit to an incredibly story about her career – with tons of material and insight…check it out on “Flashbak.com” here:
As you can see, Elvira’s photo shoots were anything but demure…
So how did Elvira feel about these photos? Here is a great quote from her:
“It was easy for me to do nude scenes all the time because I had been a showgirl for a while, and all you wear is G-string. Basically, that’s what I wore in movies. Topless was no problem for me.”
I applaud Peterson for her honesty – and she’s far from the only movie star to pose for provocative pictures:
That’s right: Linda Blair went from a head-turning performance in “The Exorcist” to turning heads with this adult photo shoot!
Click here to see the whole story, with more photos:
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Bravo Cassandra Peterson on your iconic career!