The mythos of Bram Stoker's Dracula is about to get a modern spine-tingling twist. Sony Pictures has released the first trailer for The Invitation, an upcoming gothic horror thriller movie that is loosely inspired by Stoker's original work. The film, which was initially called The Bride, stars Game of Thrones and Fast & Furious alum Nathalie Emmanuel as Evie, an adult orphan who takes a consumer DNA test and learns she has extended family in Britain. But soon after meeting her newfound and extravagantly wealthy relatives, Evie discovers their shocking, bloody history – and the family's sinister intentions for her.
"[Evie] doesn't really feel like she has anyone," Emmanuel explained in an interview with IGN. "And so when this kind of random, long-lost cousin happens upon her life after taking a DNA test for fun, just to be silly or just for the fun of it, it really kind of draws her in because she's someone who is really craving family and a support network again. She gets kind of pulled into this family with really high expectations, in a way. And yeah, like you say, be careful what you wish for because they aren't exactly what she thought they were and they would be."
According to Emmanuel, the film tackles "being in a space where you are the minority, all of these people are very wealthy, white aristocracy. And Evie is someone who struggles financially, she's not from a super-wealthy family, she's a woman of color, she's coming from such a different space. And so she's already kind of on alert, on high alert, because she's already at a kind of disadvantage in every possible way. But what they probably didn't count on was how smart and savvy and the strength within her."
The cast of The Invitation also includes Thomas Doherty as Walter, Hugh Skinner as Oliver, Stephanie Corneliussen as Viktoria, Alana Boden as Lucy, and Courtney Taylor as Grace. The film is directed by Jessica M. Thompson with a script from Blair Butler. Previous reports have indicated that, if the film is successful, it could start a franchise.
"[Thompson is a] really, really smart, confident, knows-what-she-wants, brilliant director." Emmanuel said elsewhere in the interview. Jess did a lot of work with [me and Doherty] to help build that ease, that chemistry that they immediately have, and which ultimately lures her into a false sense of security."
What do you think of the first trailer for The Invitation? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below!
The Invitation will be released in theaters on August 26th.