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Anulka Dziubunska Fiona Horne Ingrid Pitt Donna Ricci Yvonne Romain Madeline Smith
Anulka Dziubinska
Fiona Horne
Ingrid Pitt
Donna Ricci
Yvonne Romain
Madeline Smith
Anulka Dziubinska
Twenty five years ago, a low-budget British horror film called Vampyres caused a minor stir: a delicious cocktail of lesbian sex and gratuitous gore, it became an instant cult hit and made a small fortune in America. The film starred two actresses-turned-models: brunette Marianne Morris and the blonde former ‘Playboy Playmate’ Anulka Dziubinska. Both faded from the public eye not long after and Anulka became something of an enigma. Vampyres buff Tim Greaves had no trouble tracking Marianne Morris down: she had remained in England and now runs a small business. Anulka, however, proved trickier.
As such I was delighted when I stumbled across the unmistakable Miss Dziubinska quite by chance. Still ravishingly beautiful, she now lives in California, working as an understandably popular florist. Anulka has come an awfully long way since Vampyres: an impressive performance in The Likely Lads movie, the move to the States, two children, a spell as Maitre’ D at the original Nobu restaurant in Beverly Hills, conversion to Buddhism and countless other adventures have filled the last 25 years of her life. Today, she is likeable, unswervingly cheerful and still remarkably sexy.
“I have to tell you how Vampyres came about,” she gushes, “I was at a cocktail party and I ran into Sir John Mills and I adored Hayley, so I went over to talk to him about my favourite film of all time, Whistle Down The Wind, which I’ve seen four million times. I said to him that I was an actress and that I’d been acting since I was at school and then I asked him if he had any advice, and he said, ‘do everything you’re offered, because everything you do will give you some experience!’ The first thing I was offered the next day was Vampyres!”
Unlike some of her peers, Anulka enjoyed the Vampyres experience, throwing herself energetically into her demanding role which saw her covered in fake blood (“my hair smelt of peppermint for weeks afterwards!”), forced to juggle simulated sex with Marianne Morris in a shower whilst trying to get her dialogue out (ok, so it’s a dilemma you or I might enjoy, but for a young, avowedly heterosexual actress, it’s a lot to manage!) and coping with the usual frayed tempers and personality clashes which go hand in hand with low-budget film making.
Sadly, in the mid Seventies, the British film industry went into terminal decline: rampant unionism destroyed schedules, preposterously high taxes drove talent abroad and the trend for ‘Event Movies’ sparked by the likes of The Exorcist, The Omen and - especially - Jaws made low budget horror films less and less popular (they eventually found their progressive home on video in the eighties). Bravely, Anulka decided to make the journey across the Atlantic: Hollywood beckoned and she heeded the call.
Arriving in the States, Anulka presented herself - eight by ten publicity shot in hand - at the legendary Writers And Artists Agency and was immediately snapped up. She was plunged head first into the world of big moustaches and Hawaian shirts that was Magnum PI, playing a tennis pro opposite Tom Selleck’s bewhiskered detective. Further television work followed, including Bare Essence, a mini-series co-starring Ian McShane. However, fate intervened: “I got pregnant,” she chuckles, “And the minute I became pregnant, I gave up acting.”
Since then, Anulka has watched with detached amusement as the mysterious stories of her whereabouts have sprung up. Delighted with her cult status, she still enjoys Vampyres and is planning a reunion with director Jose Larraz during a trip to England later this year. An acting comeback is on the cards too – “Acting is in my blood,” she asserts enthusiastically. Meanwhile, Anulka remains a renaissance figure – when not surrounded by her flowers, she writes and still dabbles in film production, though generally behind the camera now. With luck, this should soon change, and one of cinema’s most beautiful Vampyres will grace our screens again.
Article taken from Bite me issue 5
Photos by Ashley Fontenot
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