NIGHT OF THE DEMON

GB
1957
1hr 35mins
Dir: Jacques Tourneur
Starring: Niall MacGinnis and Peggy Cummins

A reporter finds himself cursed by an occultist with the ability to summon a demon

This classic early horror is much respected today amongst followers of the genre and it has a memorable final sequence in which the occultist, played by Niall MacGinnis, has his curse thrown back at him. He leaps from a train and then gets run down by another as the demon bears down on him. These scenes were filmed at Brickett Wood station on the Watford Junction-St Albans Abbey branch and a couple of ex-LMS Class 5MT ‘Black Five’ 4-6-0s were used for these scenes, one of which is No.45324. There are some very good shots of these in the film’s final moments, although a model was clearly used for one distant shot. Prior to this conclusion there are shots of Watford Junction station, which masqueraded as ‘Clayham Junction’, whilst the station signage at Brickett Wood was amended to read ‘Leton Wood’. The film was an adaptation of the 1911 M. R. James story Casting the Runes and to accelerate the pace, the film was trimmed down to 83 minutes and retitled Curse of the Demon in the US.

Clayham Junction. No. This is Watford Junction before its brutalist modernisation make-over made this scene unrecognisable. (Thanks to reelstreets).
The professor (Niall MacGinnis) leaves the train at Leton Wood, which is in reality Brickett Wood (Thanks to reelstreets).
Fearing for his life the professor is almost rundown by this approaching train being hauled by a ‘Black Five’
The demonic presence in the background is what he is really scared of but it is in fact another train which this time runs him down
Dana Andrews and Peggy Cummins on the platform at Brickett Wood which was in itself a film star, having appeared in no less than seven feature films in the seventeen year period 1950-1967