Hammer-ing home horror pix

“Before there was a ‘Night of the Living Dead,’ ” says director and video entrepreneur William Lustig, “there was ‘The Plague of the Zombies.’ “

Now coming to your homevideo scream – er, screen.

Fright fans who haven’t seen “Plague,” “Frankenstein Created Woman” and “Dracula – Prince of Darkness” since Saturday-night dates at the drive-in back in the ’50s and ’60s are in for a treat. Fourteen of Hammer Films’ classic horror pics will make their U.S. homevideo debut, thanks to a multiyear licensing deal signed by Anchor Bay Entertainment and specialized video biz maven Lustig.

In its heyday, England’s legendary Hammer Studios turned out dozens of “quota quickies” for U.S. majors with stars such as Christopher Lee, Peter Cushing and Raquel Welch. Helmers such as Joe Dante and Martin Scorsese have cited the Hammer pics as key influences. Several of the pics are being resurrected as remakes, including “Quatermass and the Pit,” which is on the boards at New Line.

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