25 Vintage Photo Stills From ‘Queen of Outer Space’ (1958)

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Queen of Outer Space is a 1958 American DeLuxe Color science fiction feature film in CinemaScope. Produced by Ben Schwalb and directed by Edward Bernds, it stars Zsa Zsa Gabor, Eric Fleming, and Laurie Mitchell. The screenplay by Charles Beaumont, about a revolt against a cruel Venusian queen, is based on an idea supplied by Ben Hecht and originally titled Queen of the Universe.

In 1958, the film received generally positive reviews from critics in major newspapers and in trade publications. Most reviewers, including Charles Stinson of the Los Angeles Times, approached the film in their assessments as an amusing, mildly erotic parody or spoof, not as a true science fiction offering or even a faintly serious space adventure. In his November 13 review, Stinson characterizes the feature as “cheery frivolity” with “well-constructed cheesecake”, all of which is visually punctuated by “luscious DeLuxe color”.

Marjory Adams, writing for The Boston Globe, also recognized the Gabor vehicle as a “merry spoof of science fiction” that no one either on the screen or in theater audiences takes seriously, especially with regard to the actors’ lines. “The dialogue”, notes Adams, “is of the sort which might be written by a high school freshman”, adding “the only unexpected twist is [Zsa Zsa] isn’t the queen.” Variety—for decades a leading trade publication in covering the United States’ entertainment industry—simply deemed Queen of Outer Space as “a good-natured attempt to put some honest sex into science-fiction”.

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