Grave of Criswell, Hollywood Prognosticator
North Hollywood, California
"Future events such as these will affect us in the future," pronounced Criswell in Plan 9 From Outer Space. That much he had right.
Charles Criswell King, a.k.a. "The Amazing Criswell," was a famous pop psychic who had two career arcs. The first was when he became star in the 1950s through his books, his syndicated TV program, and his newspaper column. Criswell had an uncanny knack for inaccurately predicting the future. He said that by 1980 we'd all be driving cars with built-in swimming pools and vacationing on Mars (Although he did guess that "something" would happen to JFK in late 1963).
Criswell's second turn in the spotlight came after his death on Oct. 4, 1982, when new generations discovered his cameo role in Plan 9 (1959) -- regarded as possibly the worst film ever made -- and the Tim Burton tribute to its director, Ed Wood (1994). Both have made Criswell immortal.
We thought Criswell might have been interred in his birthplace in Princeton, Indiana, and we even spent time there, years ago, searching for his grave. But it turns out that he never departed beyond North Hollywood.
The Valhalla Memorial Park cemetery is large and not extravagant. Yet it's the only graveyard in the world which contains a replica space shuttle.
Criswell's cremated remains are neatly tucked into a drawer in the outdoor Niches of Remembrance with the plaque: "'Criswell Predicts' Charles Criswell King 1907-1982."
Criswell had long pronounced that the end of the world would occur on August 18, his birthday, in 1999, but late in life he adjusted to the Mayan calendar and reset Doomsday as inescapable in 2012. Fittingly, he was again wrong.