Dracula: Year Zero

Luke Evans

Luke Evans is a talented actor who has so far been relegated to some empty historical action. According to Variety, he’s staying historical, but hopefully his turn as Dracula in Dracula: Year Zero will have a little more life to it than, say, The Three Musketeers or Immortals. The vampire project was once under Alex Proyas’ control with Sam Worthington in the lead role, but the budget got in the way of it moving forward. However, Universal was dedicated to bringing the Dracula/Vlad the Impaler hybrid to theaters. Now, newcomer Gary Shore is making it his first feature (you can take a look at his commercial work here). He’s clearly got talent, but it’s always a little discouraging to see a young commercial director brought on for an iconic project for one reason: it’s done so that studios can maintain strict control over the project. Hopefully Shore will buck that trend by committing a fresh perspective while refusing to be coerced into being a director in name only. At the very least he’s got a lead performer with skills and a definite resemblance to the character. All he needs is a longer (flatter) mustache and a crazy bejeweled hat to make the transition. Enjoy bringing the crossword puzzle to work, make-up and costume departments.

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Alex Proyas might want to look into getting some budgeting software or something, because this “over budget” thing is becoming bizarrely familiar. Let’s rehash! Just this week, Proyas’ Paradise Lost adaptation was shut down by Legendary due to a wicked combo of too much funds and too little technology, and now another project that Proyas lost out on because of a bloated budget is back in the news – but for a very different reason. Universal Pictures is apparently bringing Dracula: Year Zero back from the dead, complete with a new director and likely a new cast. Don’t remember this one? Neither did I, so let’s dig back into the FSR Crypt! Back in 2008, Proyas was set to direct the flick, a supposed “medieval epic” that would serve as origin story for the toothy one. The project languished until 2010, when Sam Worthington of all people was set to star as Dracula himself (Vlad the Impaler, should we be sticking to history). And then the blood ran dry and the budget was too high, and as Deadline Kendal so amusingly puts it, Universal “close[d] the coffin.” But that coffin is now open again, and in a big (wide?) way.

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Universal really wants this vampire fad to go out with a bang and a fizzle.

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While sitting with Alex Proyas, director of Summit Entertainment’s upcoming film Knowing, we received a nice little tidbit. When asked about what he is working on next, he said it would be a film titled Dracula: Year Zero.

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