The Ghost Breakers was released in 1940, and it was one of the earliest comedy-horror films that helped kick-start a genre that became hugely popular in the 1940s……And it is undoubtedly the first zombie-comedy.
Bob Hope stars as the leading man, who quips his way through the film, which does have some creepy moments…it’s not all comedy.
The plot is a loose farce, where Bob Hope finds himself fleeing a local gang that he has upset, and ends up bumping into Paulette Goddard (who plays Mary Carter). She has just been told that she has inherited a remote island (‘Black Island’)….which comes complete with a swamp, a castle, and lots of creepy goings-on. As soon as the duo arrive at Black Island the scares (and gags) begin in earnest
The Ghost Breakers was a success when it was released, and it was subsequently turned into a radio series (that also saw Bob Hope taking on his original role again, and it was even remade in 1953 with Dean Martin and Jerry Lewis in starring roles.
There are some stunning posters that accompanied the release of the film that you can see below.