Universal Pictures confirmed today that the director of the upcoming Marvel's Eternals Chloé Zhao would be writing, directing, and producing a new take on Dracula, leaving many to wonder what that meant for Karyn Kusama's Dracula, which was announced last year, with Variety now confirming that both projects are moving forward. It's worth noting, however, that while both projects will be inspired by Bram Stoker's Dracula novel, Zhao's adaptation of the material is a reimagining of the premise and is going into a much more ambitious arena, while Kusama has previously detailed that she aims to be more faithful to the original narrative.
"Along with Chloé Zhao's new sci-fi Western take on Dracula, I've confirmed that Blumhouse remains in development on its own Dracula project, with director Karyn Kusama," Variety's Adam B. Vary confirmed on Twitter.
The Hollywood Reporter notes that Zhao's project "will be a far cry from the more traditional or even modern incarnations made over the years. Details are being kept in the coffin, but Zhao's version is described as an original, futuristic, sci-fi Western. Themes of being on society's fringes, something Zhao has tackled in her previous work, will course through the project's veins."
Meanwhile, Kusama detailed what she aimed to capture with her project last year.
"It's a fairly faithful adaptation of Bram Stoker's novel," Kusama revealed to The Kingcast. "I think something that gets overlooked in the adaptations of Dracula in the past is the idea of multiple voices. In fact, the book is filled with different points of view. And the one point of view we don't get access to, and all most adaptations give access to, is Dracula himself. So I would just say in some respect, this is going to be an adaptation called 'Dracula,' but it's perhaps not the same kind of romantic hero that we've seen in the past… in past interpretations of Dracula."
Dracula has inspired films for years, including Nosferatu and the Bela Lugosi-starring Dracula. Back in 2014, Luke Evans starred as the character in Dracula Untold, serving as a soft reboot of the character, which was initially slated to launch a series of Universal Monsters reboots. When that film was largely a critical and financial disappointment, it wasn't until 2017 that The Mummy official kicked off the "Dark Universe," only for that film to also be a disappointment for fans and kill the potential of the shared universe.
Last year's The Invisible Man reimagined the core concept to become one of the year's biggest horror movies. This resulted in the announcement of a number of new projects set within the Universal Monsters world.
Stay tuned for details on these two Dracula projects.
Are you glad both projects are moving forward? Let us know in the comments below or contact Patrick Cavanaugh directly on Twitter to talk all things horror and Star Wars!