Dee Wallace began her career with appearances on 1970s television series such as The Streets of San Francisco, Ellery Queen and Starsky and Hutch. But her film debut was in one of the most iconic horror films of all time, Wes Craven’s The Hills Have Eyes. Her role of Lynne was very demanding, since she had to portray a young mother desperately trying to save her infant from the clutches of Papa Jupiter and his horrific inbred clan of cannibals. Her harrowing battle to the death with Pluto and Mars is still difficult to watch.
Four years later, Wallace returned to horror in The Howling, then hit it big as the beleaguered and extremely likeable Mary (AKA Elliot’s Mom) in ET. Still, she kept retuning to horror, and her films are some of the most-loved in the genre. She again played a protective mother in Cujo before appearing in Critters, Popcorn, The Frighteners, The House of the Devil, Red Christmas, Death House and Jeepers Creepers: Reborn.
Rob Zombie must love her, because she has appeared in several of his films: 2007’s Halloween, The Lords of Salem, 3 From Hell, and even The Munsters. Don’t remember seeing her in The Munsters? That’s because you didn’t; she provided her voice as the Good Morning, Transylvania announcer.
I had the privilege of meeting her at a horror convention, where I paid for a photo op, and she was so gracious and welcoming. She shook my hand, asked my name, and never made her fans feel like she was rushing through the meet and greet.
Her talent, longevity and approachability are what make her a deserving recipient of the Scream Queens crown.