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Melissa Stribling

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Occupation  Actress
Name  Melissa Stribling

Role  Film actress
Spouse  Basil Dearden (m. ?–1971)
Melissa Stribling Melissa Stribling
Full Name  Melissa Stribling Smith
Born  7 November 1926 (1926-11-07) Gourock, Scotland
Died  March 22, 1992, Watford, United Kingdom
Children  James Dearden, Torquil Dearden
Grandchildren  Callum Dearden, Lara Dearden
Movies  Dracula, The Secret Partner, Only When I Larf, The Safecracker, The Road to Saint Tropez
Similar People  Carol Marsh, John Van Eyssen, Janina Faye, Michael Gough, Terence Fisher


Melissa Stribling (7 November 1926 – 22 March 1992) was a Scottish film and television actress.




Born in Gourock, Scotland as Melissa Stribling Smith, her career began with the film Wide Boy (1952), Stribling is known for playing the role of Mina Holmwood in the horror film Dracula (1958) starring Christopher Lee in the title role. In the 1960s and 1970s, she guest-starred in the TV series Benny Hill (1963), ITV Play of the Week, The Avengers, The Persuaders!, The Dick Emery Show, and The New Avengers. Her last appearance was in the film Paris by Night (1988) with Charlotte Rampling.

In the film Dracula, her character was the victim of a vampire in what can be seen as an erotically charged performance. Dracula and Mina showing sexual pleasure in this way was a first in British cinema.

Melissa Stribling The Avengers Series 2 School For Traitors cast

Terence Fisher remembers her asking him how to play the scene. Terence replied, saying that she should imagine that she had one whale of a sexual night and that it should be shown on her face. The author Mark Clark detailed the first encounter between Dracula and Mina in his book Smirk, sneer, and scream: great acting in horror cinema which he described as an implied erotic scene. Jonathan Rigby complimented her performance in his book English gothic: a century of horror cinema, saying that she is a terrific female lead throughout the film. Terence Fisher said that he told her that she produced a satisfied little facial expression that speaks volumes.


She was married to Basil Dearden; their son is James Dearden, also a film director. Their younger son is Torquil Dearden, a London-based editor at a company specialising in commercials and corporate videos.


  • 1952 Wide Boy - Caroline
  • 1952 Crow Hollow - Diana Wilson
  • 1952 Ghost Ship - Party Girl (Vera)
  • 1953 Decameron Nights - Girl in Villa
  • 1953 Noose for a Lady - Vanessa Lane
  • 1954 Thought to Kill - Mary
  • 1955 Out of the Clouds - Jean Osmond
  • 1956 Behind the Headlines - Mary Carrick
  • 1957 Murder Reported - Amanda North
  • 1958 The Safecracker - Angela
  • 1958 Dracula - Mina Holmwood
  • 1960 The League of Gentlemen - Peggy
  • 1961 The Secret Partner - Helen Standish
  • 1968 Only When I Larf - Diana
  • 1968 Journey into Darkness - Helen Ames (episode 'The New People')
  • 1970 The Persuaders Episode Powerswitch
  • 1971 Crucible of Terror - Joanna Brent
  • 1974 Confessions of a Window Cleaner - Mrs. Villiers
  • 1976 Feelings - Charlotte Randall
  • 1988 Paris by Night - Lady Boeing (Last appearance)
  • References

    Melissa Stribling Wikipedia