3 January 2009
Hammer star Stephanie in Big Brother house
Hammer star Stephanie Beacham is amongst the contestants for the 7th and final series of Channel 4's Celebrity Big Brother, which runs for three weeks from 3rd January in the UK.
The 62 year old actress made her onscreen debut in 1967, and in 1972 joined the ranks of Hammer glamour playing the part of Jessica Van Helsing, with Peter Cushing as her grandfather in the first of the modern Draculas - Dracula AD 1972.
By the time she next appeared for Hammer in A Distant Scream -an episode of Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense- in 1984 , she had accrued a large number of credits including a starring role in the spin off of US soap Dynasty - The Colbys and would later play opposite Joan Collins in Dynasty proper.
After a long career on both sides of the Atlantic Stephanie has recently played recurring roles in UK drama Bad Girls and in soap Coronation Street (both for ITV).
The Big Brother house has been designed by producers Endemol to resemble Dante's vision of Hell - though with Stephanie's appearance could there be a contemporary take on Hammer films in the offing? Celebrity Big Brother has featured a Hammer connection before. The line-up for the controversial fifth series in 2007 included actor Dirk Benedict, star of Hammer House of Mystery and Suspense: Mark of the Devil (although best known for his portrayal of Face in US drama The A Team), as well as actress Cleo Rocos (who had starred in the Hammeresque spoof film Bloodbath in the House of Death) and maverick director Ken Russell (who had declined an approach by Hammer to direct To The Devil A Daughter, and who paid homage to Hammer Horror with his film Gothic). To mark the occasion we'll be posting on the official Hammer Twitter feed this week about Stephanie's Hammer films.
You can follow Stephanie's life in the Big Brother house every day on Channel 4 in the UK, or via the Celebrity Big Brother website.
To find out more about Stephanie, visit her official website.