Dementia 13 (UK title: The Haunted and the Hunted) is a 1963 horror-thriller released by American International Pictures, starring William Campbell, Patrick Magee, and Luana Anders. The film was written and directed by Francis Ford Coppola and produced by Roger Corman. Although Coppola had been involved in at least two nudie films previously, Dementia 13 served as his first mainstream, “legitimate,” directorial effort. The plot follows a scheming young woman who, after having inadvertently caused the heart attack death of her husband, attempts to have herself written into her rich mother-in-law’s will. She pays a surprise visit to her late husband’s family castle in Ireland, but her plans become permanently interrupted by an axe-wielding lunatic who begins to stalk and murderously hack away at members of the family.
Corman offered Coppola the chance to direct a low-budget horror film in Ireland with funds left over from Corman’s recently completed The Young Racers, on which Coppola had worked as a sound technician. The producer wanted a cheap Psycho copy, complete with gothic atmosphere and brutal killings, and Coppola quickly wrote a screenplay in accordance with Corman’s requirements. Although he was given total directorial freedom during production, Coppola found himself fighting with Corman after the film was completed. The producer declared the movie unreleasable and demanded several changes be made. Corman eventually brought in another director, Jack Hill, to film additional sequences.
Directed by Francis Ford Coppola
Produced by Roger Corman
Written by Francis Ford Coppola
Starring William Campbell, Luana Anders, Patrick Magee
Music by Ronald Stein
Cinematography Charles Hannawalt
Edited by Stuart O’Brien, Morton Tubor
Distributed by American International Pictures
Release dates September 25, 1963
Running time 80 minutes
Country United States