Anthony Hinds

[John Elder]

Biography of Anthony Hinds

Anthony Hinds, also known as Tony Hinds and John Elder (born 19 September 1922), is a British screenwriter and producer. He is the son of the founder of Hammer Film Productions, William Hinds.

Early life

Hinds was educated at St Paul's School. He joined his father's business briefly before he went off to become a pilot in the RAF during World War II.

Motion picture career

Hammer Films

Hinds returned to Hammer in 1946 and initially produced a great many modest thrillers. One of these was The Dark Road (1947), one of the quota quickies, which featured a jewellery shop called 'Hinds', a reference to his father's original business. This business had been divided in the 1920s between William and his brother Frank Hinds. Frank's part is now the F. Hinds national jewellery chain.

In the summer of 1953, Hinds had been enthralled by the BBC's The Quatermass Experiment, a six part science fiction thriller written by Nigel Kneale. Hinds was so impressed by what he saw that he suggested that Hammer should buy the big screen rights. They approached the BBC and snapped up the rights. The Quatermass Xperiment (1955) was a runaway success and was the first of the three Quatermass cinema films based on the television serials.

Hinds came up with the idea of hiring country houses and shooting films in the rooms and grounds of the locations, which saved the cost of kitting out a full studio and was one of the most important decisions in Hammer's history.

Screenwriting as John Elder

Under the pseudonym John Elder, he was a prolific screenwriter and from the mid 1960s he concentrated on this activity, returning to production for The Lost Continent (1968). He is a very influential figure in the Hammer success story.

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