This Day in Horror History: Happy Birthday, Michael Berryman
On this day in horror history, Michael Berryman was born in 1948. Berryman is best known around these parts for playing Pluto in writer-director Wes Craven’s 1977 horror film The Hills Have Eyes and the 1985 sequel The Hills Have Eyes Part II.
His time on The Hills Have Eyes set was difficult due to the desert temperatures surpassing 100 degrees regularly during the 4-month shoot. Without sweat glands, Berryman had to take special precautions in order to avoid suffering heatstroke.
Berryman was born with hypohidrotic ectodermal dysplasia, a rare condition characterized by the absence of sweat glands, hair, and fingernails; his unique appearance paved the way for a killer career in horror movies.
He came to prominence with roles films such as One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest and The Hills Have Eyes. His other classics include Deadly Blessing, Weird Science, Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home, Star Trek V: The Final Frontier, Beastmaster 2: Through the Portal of Time, Double Dragon, The Lords of Salem, and Death House. He has also appeared on several TV shows, including The X-Files, Highway to Heaven, and the Tales from the Crypt episode “The Reluctant Vampire.”
Berryman had a role in The Crow opposite Brandon Lee as “The Skull Cowboy”, Eric Draven’s guide to the land of the living. But his scenes were cut. That said, they can be found as deleted scenes on some DVD releases. He has also appeared a few classic music videos such as Mötley Crüe’s “Smokin’ In the Boys Room.”
He is an advocate for environmental protection and lived on a wolf sanctuary for ten years. His father was a US Naval surgeon deployed to the fallout zone in the wake of the Hiroshima atomic bombing. He is married to Patricia Berryman.