The new film Renfield will shift focus away from the iconic vampire Dracula, with X-Men: First Class and Mad Max: Fury Road star Nicholas Hoult confirmed to be playing the titular character, per Deadline. The upcoming film will be directed by The Tomorrow War director Chris McKay and comes from an original story by The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman, with a script by Ryan Ridley. Actual plot details of the story have yet to be teased, including whether or not the film will connect to either of the two Dracula films that are currently in development at Universal Pictures.
Deadline details of the project, "In the original Dracula novel, R.M. Renfield was an inmate at a lunatic asylum who was thought to be suffering from delusions but actually is a servant of Dracula. Plot details of the movie weren't announced, but it's believed to take place during the present day and is not a period piece."
Much like Igor frequently being connected to Victor Frankenstein, Renfield is often closely connected with Dracula, though hasn't been featured in every adaptation of the character. Arguably the most famous incarnation of the character came from Tom Waits, who played Renfield in Bram Stoker's Dracula in 1992 from director Francis Ford Coppola.
Earlier this year, Kirkman detailed what audiences could expect from the film.
"We're doing this cool movie for Universal that's a focus on Renfield," Kirkman shared with the Fatman Beyond podcast. "It's a story about him being Dracula's henchman, and how sh-tty a job that is. It's a fun, extremely violent comedy, because I've got a crutch and it's violence."
Dracula, along with other Universal Monsters like The Wolf Man, The Mummy, and Frankenstein have all earned a number of adaptations and reimaginings over the years, with Universal announcing in 2017 that it was debuting an interconnected "Dark Universe" of reboots, which was kicking off with the Tom Cruise-starring The Mummy. Following that film's disappointments, the concept of the Dark Universe was almost entirely scrapped.
In 2020, the standalone The Invisible Man became one of the year's most successful and critically acclaimed horror efforts, resulting in the announcement of multiple Dracula projects, a new The Wolf Man, and other Universal Monster movie projects.
Stay tuned for updates on Renfield.
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