‘Cirque du Freak’ Tranforms into ‘The Vampire’s Assistant,’ Gets a Release Date


It’s been ages since we’ve even thought about this flick. I always blamed the name.

Back in 2007, we dropped the news bomb on you that John C. Reilly was going to join the cast of this, yet another, vampire film, and we followed it up in 2008 when there was a change that Willem Dafoe himself would go from Antichrist to vampire-lover. But since then, the news about Paul Weitz’s (American Pie, About a Boy) project has been barely whispers.

Luckily, we got an email covered in blood today (don’t worry, I’m using Neil’s computer so he’ll have to clean it up) trumpeting that not only is Cirque du Freak changing its awful name to The Vampire’s Assistant, it’s also getting the solid release date of October 23rd.

“But what’s it about?” I make you rhetorically ask. Well, I’ll tell you.

It tells the story of a common boy who meets up with a traveling circus freak show only to learn that its inhabitants are a bit more other-worldly. He then, like you do, breaks a centuries old truce between two quarreling vamp factions.

If the plot doesn’t real you in (and frankly, it does seem a bit standard with a dash of opportunity for cool designs), here’s a list of the personnel involved:

  • Paul Weitz directing and co-writing
  • Brian Helgeland co-writing
  • Starring John C. Reilly, Ken Watanabe, Josh Hutcherson, Patrick Fugit, Salma Hayek, and many more

That list right there gets me excited. I really dig Weitz’s work, especially in voicing teenagers, and there’s no doubt about Brian Helgeland’s writing ability – especially if you’ve been lucky enough to see the director’s cut of Payback or, you know, enjoyed L.A. Confidential (he’s also writing the forthcoming Robin Hood flick).

Plus, the talent involved is a cool list. I would have liked to see the rumors about Dafoe be true, but I’ll definitely take Reilly and Watanabe. Plus, as child actors go, Hutcherson is one of the least annoying which is about as high as child actors can ever rank on my scale.

Hopefully we’ll get to see some trailers and the like soon enough, probably closer to the end of summer when things start to cool off.

What do you think? In for a little fantasy adventure?

A veteran of writing about movies for nearly a decade, Scott Beggs has been the Managing Editor of Film School Rejects since 2009. Despite speculation, he is not actually Walter Mathau's grandson. See? He can't even spell his name right.

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