Quiz about James Whale Director of Monsters
Quiz about James Whale Director of Monsters

James Whale: Director of Monsters Quiz


James Whale was a successful director in the cinematic genre of horror. Despite the individual not being as well known in the modern era, his films remain some of the most iconic to come out of Hollywood.

A multiple-choice quiz by jonnowales. Estimated time: 5 mins.
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Author
jonnowales
Time
5 mins
Type
Multiple Choice
Quiz #
339,336
Updated
Jul 23 22
# Qns
10
Difficulty
Average
Avg Score
7 / 10
Plays
320
Awards
Top 5% quiz!
Last 3 plays: Guest 173 (9/10), bananapeel39 (7/10), pughmv (10/10).
This quiz has 2 formats: you can play it as a or as shown below.
Scroll down to the bottom for the answer key.
1. Through his direction of horror films, James Whale escaped the shackles of his modest upbringing to make a career for himself in Hollywood. Whale was born in Dudley near Birmingham, which is in which of the following countries? Hint

UK
New Zealand
USA
South Africa

2. James Whale was born in 1889 and as such he would have found it very difficult to dodge military service when a major war broke out in the 1910s. As a result Whale decided to embark upon military duties before he was forced by conscription, but in which war was he to take active part? Hint

World War II
World War I
Crimean War
Korean War

3. In 1928 James Whale managed to combine the role of director with his experiences of military life when he worked on the theatre production of an R. C. Sherriff play. What was the name of this play that originally starred Laurence Olivier? Hint

Waiting for Godot
Death of a Salesman
Journey's End
The Glass Menagerie

4. James Whale's experiences in the theatre industry proved invaluable when it came to his early career in Hollywood and his knowledge was particularly useful when it came to transforming silent films into "talkies". What was the name of the film about World War I pilots that Whale directed alongside Howard Hughes in 1930? Hint

Charlie's Angels
Hell's Angels
Angels & Demons
City of Angels

5. James Whale made it to the big time in 1931 when he accepted a contract from a major film studio. Which of the following studios, known for films such as 'To Kill A Mockingbird' (1962), 'Jaws' (1975) and 'Jurassic Park' (1993), offered Whale that contract? Hint

Universal Pictures
Paramount
Warner Bros.
20th Century Fox

6. In 1931 the director James Whale switched from the popular war genre to the intriguing world of horror. His debut horror film would be remembered many decades later as one of the greatest of all time, but what was the name of this film, starring Boris Karloff? Hint

The Birds
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Frankenstein
Dracula

7. It was uncommon for well-known individuals in the 1930s to be openly gay but director James Whale was honest about his sexuality throughout his Hollywood career. His long term partner was David Lewis but was Mr. Lewis also involved in the film industry?

Yes
No

8. In 1933 James Whale directed the science fiction classic, 'The Invisible Man', but who was the author of the book of the same name? Hint

Isaac Asimov
Jules Verne
Robert Heinlein
H. G. Wells

9. The 1937 film 'The Road Back' would prove to be the beginning of the demise of James Whale's directorial career. The film sparked a diplomatic row which even required the intervention of the US Department of State. The officials of which country's government objected to the release of 'The Road Back', a sequel to 'All Quiet on the Western Front' (1930)? Hint

Japan
Germany
China
Russia

10. In 1941, James Whale's Hollywood career came to an end when the contract with his employer expired and was not renewed. Over the subsequent years he suffered both physical and mental illnesses, but how did Whale die in 1957? Hint

Cancer
Suicide
Heart attack
Car accident


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Quiz Answer Key and Fun Facts
1. Through his direction of horror films, James Whale escaped the shackles of his modest upbringing to make a career for himself in Hollywood. Whale was born in Dudley near Birmingham, which is in which of the following countries?

Answer: UK

Hailing from the English town of Dudley, James Whale was born into a solid working class family - a class of society from which he was desperate to escape. He would later find that the financial constraints of his upbringing would be replaced by the suffocating politics of the film studios, politics that would ultimately lead to the premature end of his career.
2. James Whale was born in 1889 and as such he would have found it very difficult to dodge military service when a major war broke out in the 1910s. As a result Whale decided to embark upon military duties before he was forced by conscription, but in which war was he to take active part?

Answer: World War I

James Whale volunteered for and trained to join the British Army in the period 1914-1915 and the following few years would transform his life entirely. His experiences as a prisoner of war, detained in the German prison camp of Holzminden, elicited his deep desire to be involved in the arts and, shortly after the end of World War I, Whale went looking for work as an actor and director.
3. In 1928 James Whale managed to combine the role of director with his experiences of military life when he worked on the theatre production of an R. C. Sherriff play. What was the name of this play that originally starred Laurence Olivier?

Answer: Journey's End

'Journey's End' told the story of soldiers involved in trench warfare during World War I. With the play being produced for public attendance just ten years after the end of the Great War, 'Journey's End' resonated with its audience. It was partly the play's relevance that led to it being so well received by critics. Both Laurence Olivier and James Whale were unknowns before 'Journey's End' but both gentlemen would later become involved in major cinematic projects with much larger audiences.
4. James Whale's experiences in the theatre industry proved invaluable when it came to his early career in Hollywood and his knowledge was particularly useful when it came to transforming silent films into "talkies". What was the name of the film about World War I pilots that Whale directed alongside Howard Hughes in 1930?

Answer: Hell's Angels

'Hell's Angels' was a 1930 film which followed the lives of World War I pilots. The film was mainly directed by Howard Hughes and featured the talents of the Blonde Bombshell Jean Harlow, who died at the young age of 26 in 1937. Howard Hughes was responsible for the film's silent scenes whilst James Whale was put in charge of the dialogue.

The military theme of this film was safe territory for James Whale after his involvement in the very successful production for stage and screen, 'Journey's End', a production that he would return to after the completion of 'Hell's Angels'.
5. James Whale made it to the big time in 1931 when he accepted a contract from a major film studio. Which of the following studios, known for films such as 'To Kill A Mockingbird' (1962), 'Jaws' (1975) and 'Jurassic Park' (1993), offered Whale that contract?

Answer: Universal Pictures

The first film that Whale directed for Universal Pictures (commonly known as Universal Studios) was the 1931 production 'Waterloo Bridge'. The film starred Mae Clarke, who would later feature in other films directed by James Whale. Bette Davis was also an actress in 'Waterloo Bridge', though she had not yet gained the fame that she eventually achieved.

Of all of Whale's characteristics it was his frugal efficiency that impressed the chief of production at Universal Pictures, Carl Laemmle, Jr. Due to the high number of flops to come out of the studio, Whale's good use of funds was positively welcomed. So much so that Whale was given the opportunity to pick one of the films in the early stages of development at the studio to direct. His choice resulted in one of the most iconic films of the era.
6. In 1931 the director James Whale switched from the popular war genre to the intriguing world of horror. His debut horror film would be remembered many decades later as one of the greatest of all time, but what was the name of this film, starring Boris Karloff?

Answer: Frankenstein

The year 1931 saw the release of two of the greatest classic horror films ever made, 'Frankenstein' (directed by James Whale) and 'Dracula' (directed by Tod Browning). The excellent performances put in by Boris Karloff and Bela Lugosi, as Frankenstein's monster and Count Dracula respectively, contributed majorly to the success of these films and, in so doing, aided in horror's transition to mainstream cinema.

Part of what made Frankenstein's monster so intriguing was its ghastly appearance, an appearance that was fabricated by makeup artist Jack Pierce. Even though Pierce was not as well known as his artistic creations, his role in creating the appearances of the monsters of classic horror must surely make him one of the greats in the field of makeup artistry.
7. It was uncommon for well-known individuals in the 1930s to be openly gay but director James Whale was honest about his sexuality throughout his Hollywood career. His long term partner was David Lewis but was Mr. Lewis also involved in the film industry?

Answer: Yes

David Lewis was a Hollywood producer who was involved in the 1948 film 'Arch of Triumph' which featured the talents of Ingrid Bergman, Charles Laughton and Charles Boyer. He produced a couple of other films but was not as prominent as his partner, James Whale.

There is debate amongst film critics and academics as to whether Whale's homosexuality influenced his work. The issue of whether or not there was a "gay theme" that was common to all (or most) of Whale's films is somewhat controversial and both David Lewis and Whale's biographer, James Curtis, oppose such notions. James Curtis made the very interesting point that if Whale's films were influenced by his personal life, the influence was more likely to come from his working class roots than from his sexuality.
8. In 1933 James Whale directed the science fiction classic, 'The Invisible Man', but who was the author of the book of the same name?

Answer: H. G. Wells

James Whale was the director who brought H. G. Wells' 'The Invisible Man' to the big screen and the outcome was a great success. The film remained popular for many decades and in 2008 it joined the list of films preserved in America's National Film Registry. Other films directed by James Whale that have been selected for preservation include 'Frankenstein' (1931) and 'Bride of Frankenstein' (1935).

H. G. Wells is regarded as one of the science fiction greats and many of his literary classics have been adapted for the screen. Such films include 'The Time Machine' (1960, 2002) and numerous versions of 'The War of the Worlds'.
9. The 1937 film 'The Road Back' would prove to be the beginning of the demise of James Whale's directorial career. The film sparked a diplomatic row which even required the intervention of the US Department of State. The officials of which country's government objected to the release of 'The Road Back', a sequel to 'All Quiet on the Western Front' (1930)?

Answer: Germany

By 1937 the Nazi party (NSDAP) led by Adolf Hitler was well and truly in power in Germany. Some diplomats took issue with the production of 'The Road Back' due to its anti-Nazi bias, the book of the same name by Erich Maria Remarque had already been banned in Germany.

Due to financial instability, Universal Pictures had just recently seen a change of management and the relationship between the new chief at Universal and James Whale was strained when the demands of Germany were accepted. Whale was incensed by the notion that he had to change the content of some of the scenes and shortly thereafter the management team wanted to terminate their contract with Whale. In typical fashion he rejected any offers but Whale would no longer receive big films to direct.
10. In 1941, James Whale's Hollywood career came to an end when the contract with his employer expired and was not renewed. Over the subsequent years he suffered both physical and mental illnesses, but how did Whale die in 1957?

Answer: Suicide

Whale suffered from strokes and depression in the years after his retirement. There were also elements of a midlife crisis, with Whale visiting France, becoming besotted with a gentleman in his 20s and taking him back to America. This resulted in Whale's partner of more than twenty years, David Lewis, moving out of their shared home, signalling the end of their relationship.

James Whale died in May 1957, aged 67, after committing suicide by drowning; the end of his life tragic but the magnificence of his work lives on.
Source: Author jonnowales

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