Tragedy occurs when a bus runs into a high voltage power line. Everyone dies except for Dan McCormick (Lon Chaney, Jr.), who emerges from the wreckage discovering that he is immune to the effects of electricity. After a brief stint of survivors remorse, he joins a sideshow act as Dynamo Dan, the Electric Man.
Dr. Lawrence takes in McCormick to further study his abilities. However, Dr. Lawrence’s mad scientist wannabe partner Dr. Rigas has a brainstorm. Why settle for a sideshow act while you can take McCormick’s uncanny abilities to create an army of elctrobiologically driven zombie horde!
Man-Made Monster originally slated Boris Karloff for the role of Dan McCormick with Bela Lugosi playing opposite as Dr. Rigas. The film was then titled The Electric Man but was scrapped because the concept of the movie was too close to prior similar titles that Karloff and Lugosi both stared, The Invisible Ray. The movie was shelved for four years until new management at Universal took the film off the shelf.
Man-Made Monster was intended to be a quick one and done feature for a quick profit. The film was shot in three weeks and was directed by George Waggner and would be one of the cheapest films Universal would release that year. However, don’t let the low budget fool you, the film overcame its limitations and the filmmakers were still able to create stunning special effects throughout the movie.
The film was only a small success at the box office and Man-Made Monster would go on to launch Lon Chaney’s career at Universal Pictures and go on to a long successful and legendary career on the silver screen.