She was always popular at these events, and usually had a queue at her table!
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Ingrid Pitt (1936 - 2010)
Peter Wyngard & Ingrid Pitt in Jason King
I met Ingrid Pitt at Memorabilia held at the Birmingham NEC, in November 2007. Dad and I chatted to her for about 20 minutes. She was really fascinated to hear that my grandad had been a Lancaster bomber pilot during the war. She loved British WWII aircraft, and had so much respect for the crew who flew them.
Ingrid Pitt was born as Ingoushka Petrov in 1937, on a train which had crossed the border into Germany. Her parents were trying to flee the Nazi regime and make their way via Poland to England, where her father had lived for many years. Her father, a German scientist of Russian descent, was wanted by the German government to assist with work on mil
military projects, but he refused to help the Nazi programme to develop rockets. Ingrid's Polish mother was of Jewish descent and, during World War II, she and Ingrid (includ
The gas chamber & crematorium at
Stutthof concentration camp
were imprisoned for three years in the Stutthof concentration camp near Danzig in Poland. Stutthof was primarily a forced labour camp, and most of the prisoners there were non-Jews, although there we
Ingrid eventually settled in East Berlin where she went on to become a stage actress. During this period in the late-19
Ingrid aged about four
Steffanie Pitt as Martha in
The Lady and the Highwayman
1950s, she met an American lieutenant Roland Pitt, who helped her to escape to the West. They eventually married and moved to California where they had a daughter Steffanie, who later became an actress and a graphic designer.
However, Ingrid's marriage had failed and she returned to Europe, had a small role in a Spanish film, Sound of Horror (1964), and then moved back to Hollywood, working as a waitress whilst trying to make a career in films. She was uncredited in Dr Zhivago (1965) and A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum (1966), but had a starring role in the sci-fi film The Omegans (1968).
Ingrid's big screen break cam
came when she was cast as Heidi, an undercover agent, opposite Clint Eastwood and Richard Burton in the war film Where Eagles Dare (1968). Most of the film’s interiors were shot at the MGM-British studios in Borehamwood, Hertfordshire, and it was then that Ingrid ma
Ingrid Pitt & Mary Ure in Where Eagles Dare
Ingrid Pitt & Derren Nesbitt have both signed my still
from Where Eagles Dare
made England her home (although she lived in Argentina for several years in the late 1970s).
It was around this time that she married her second husband Tony ('Tonio') Rudlin, a racing driver and small time actor. He was
Richard Burton & Ingrid Pitt in
Where Eagles Dare
Ingrid as Heidi in
Where Eagles Dare
was later to co-write books with Ingrid, and was Ingrid's loyal partner for forty years until her death in 2010.
Two years later, Ingrid made her first Hammer Horror film, with Peter Cu
Ingrid Pitt & Madeline Smith in
Ingrid Pitt, Madeline Smith, Kate O'Mara, Pippa
The Vampire Lovers
Steel & Kirsten Betts in The Vampire Lovers
Cushing and Kate O'Mara, The Vampire Lovers (1970). This production helped to establish her as an icon amongst the countless fans of this genre. Ingrid was cast as the beautiful, yet
yet ferocious, vampire Marcilla Karnstein who, from time to time, comes back from her death sleep under other names names
Ingrid Pitt in The Vampire Lovers
Ingrid Pitt in The Vampire Lovers
such as Camilla or Mircalla. The film was a big box office success with its mix of horror, nudity and sexual overtones.
Peter Cushing & Ingrid Pitt in
The Vampire Lovers
Ingrid went on to play more bloodsuckers the following year. In The Ho
Jon Pertwee & Ingrid Pitt in The Cloak
Ingrid Pitt in The Cloak
there were some Polish Jews interned in the camp. The day that they were taken into a forest to be shot, Ingrid and her mother managed to escape and were rescued by partisans, with whom they lived rough during the last year of the war. After the war, they yea
trudged from one refugee camp to another, to search for Ingrid's father and older sister Brigitte, who had been sent to a separate camp. They eventually found them, but by then her father was a broken man, and he only lived for another five years.
House That Dripped Blood (1971), she appears opposite Jon Pertwee
Pertwee in segment 4 The Cloak, as a vampire playing an act
actress playing a vampire!
In the Hammer Horror classic film Countess Dracula (1971) she is cast as an ageing Countess Elisabeth who discovers that by bathing in the blood of virgins, she can restore some of her
Ingrid Pitt in Countess Dracula
her former beauty! The story isb
is based on the legends surrounding the 17th Century Hungarian 'Blood Countess' Elizabeth Báthory.
Ingrid Pitt & Sandor Eles in
As Widow in Parker
In the mid-80s, Ingrid Pitt started her own theatrical touring company and starred in successful productions of plays like Frederick Knott's Dial M for Murder.
Ingrid's next film appearance was with Britt Ekland and Christopher Lee in The Wicker Man (1973), as the uncooper
librarian who is set on hindering Sgt Howie (played by Edward Woodward) in his search for a missing child on a remote Scottish island.
Ingrid Pitt as the librarian in The Wicker Man
Ingrid Pitt's later appea
Ingrid Pitt as the hooker in Wild Geese II
big screen have included the all-action SAS drama Who Dares Wins (1982); the mercenaries adventure Wild Geese II (1985); the horror thriller Asylum (2000) in which her actress
appearances on the
daughter Steffanie has a starring role, and the horror-short Greenfingers (2000) where Ingrid plays the mysterious, and rather sinister, Mrs Bowen, a gardener who can grow any plant in her garden!
Ingrid's last film role was as Anna in the violent horror fantasy Sea of Dust (2008) in which she stars with Tom Savini and Troy Holland.
Ingrid Pitt & Troy Holland in Sea of Dust
(below) Steffanie Pitt as Jenny
(above) Ingrid Pitt as Isobella
Ingrid Pitt as Mrs Bowen in
Ingrid Pitt's TV roles have inc-lud
Ingrid Pitt as Lyn Martin in The Zoo Gang
luded Nadine in an episode of Jason King (1972); Lyn Martyn in an episode of The Zoo Gang entitled Mindless Murder (1974) with Sir John Mills; Fraulein Baum in the BBC2 Playhouse production of Unity (1981); Elvira in two episodes of Smiley's People (1982) and two Doctor Who characters - Queen Galleia in 1972 and Dr Solow in 1984.
Ingrid Pitt as Solow in Doctor Who
Ingrid Pitt as Queen Galleia & Roger Delgado
as The Master in Doctor Who
Ingrid was also something of an author,
with about a dozen titles to her name. She wrote novels like the spy story Cuckoo Run; children's books like Bertie the Bus (1981).
With her husband Tony, she wrote a Doctor Who script The Macros (based in the real life events of The Philadelphia Experiment). Th
The script never made it to TV but was later produced as an audio play with Colin Baker and Nicola Bryant. Ingrid also wrote books abou
One of Ingrid's books for children
about ghosts, a history of Hammer Films and her autobiography Life's A Scream (1999), with an updated version Darkness Before Dawn (2008).
Ingrid was a fanatical supporter of the England cricke
Audio drama The Macros
cricket team; was a black belt in karate and even held a pilot's license as she had a passion for WWII aircraft, especially the Lancaster bomber.
Ingrid was very popular on the convention circuit and loved chatting with her many fans. She recently said,"It's great meeting the fans. They say I'm more beautiful now than I was 25 years ago. All lies of course, but sweet. Where elseeeee
Ingrid Pitt died on 23rd November 2010.
else is an old bag like me going to find strapping young men and women who will whisper sweet nothings in her ear?"
I will always treasure this moment when I got a big hug
from Ingrid! A really lovely, friendly lady!
Tony Rudlin & his wife Ingrid Pitt
Ingrid Pitt has signed this print of The Wicker Man to me
Ingrid Pitt R.I.P.