Exciting news for Marvel fans! Over the weekend, at Marvel’s panel that reveled their next slate of films there were some exciting news revealed! Marvel’s Phase 4 films include several sequels to prior films including Dr. Strange in the Multiverse of Madness, Thor: Love and Thunder, and Black Widow. A few new titles were revealed to be underway as well, including television properties such as Loki, Wanda/Vision, and Falcon and the Winter Solider, in addition to original, new properties such as The Eternals and Shang Chi. But the most exciting announcement of the panel came at the very end, where seconds before the end Kevin Fiege, the head executive of Marvel Entertainment, revealed that a Blade reboot was coming. Even more exciting, two time Oscar Winner Mahershala Ali is to star in the lead role as the titular comic book character.
For those unaware, Blade is an African-English superhero from Marvel Comics. Originating from The Tomb of Dracula as a supporting character, Blade is a vampire/human hybrid, with the powers of a vampire but able to walk in sunlight and to stave off his thirst for blood. Despite his cool concept, Blade didn’t become truly popular until a trio of films in the 1990s were adapted for the big screen, starring Wesley Snipes as the vampire slayer. Bladeand Blade IIwere well received for their action, stylish flavor, and Snipes’s performance but the third film, Blade: Trinity, was so badly received that it sunk the franchise. Despite this, Blade has remained a popular character in the comics but has never truly risen to a starring role. Blade’s look is fairly simplistic, as he wears dark sunglasses, a long trench coat, and wields a sword.
Which makes it so surprising that Blade was unveiled is that Blade was already done in movies, so seeing him again is incredibly surprising. Not to mention getting an established actor like Ali to portray the superhero. It’s also incredibly exciting to see another black superhero besides Black Pantherheadlining a movie, showcasing that Marvel will be pushing for increased diversity in the future. Now, Blade was only just announced and isn’t even on the featured slate of films for Phase 4, so we likely won’t be seeing him anytime soon. But still, this surprise announcement was the highlight of the panel for us.
Image via Marvel.com
Are you excited to see the superhero Blade take up arms against vampires on the big screen? What sort of role do you think he’ll play in the MCU? And how about Mahershala Ali to play him? Any speculation of how the movie will take form and who might direct? Let us know in the comments!
Sink your teeth into this, vampire fans. A new Draculatv series, based on the original novel by Bram Stoker, is coming to Netflix and the BBC. While not airing for quite a while (the supernatural drama is expected to air in late 2019 or early 2020), what details have been revealed are quite salivating. According to The Radio Times the series will be a collaboration between the BBC and Netflix, with the two corporations working together to air the series. Dracula will be helmed by the creators of Sherlock, Steven Moffat and Mark Gatiss. Dracula himself will be played by Claes Bang, a Danish actor who said he would be ‘thrilled’ by the opportunity. He was further quoted as saying:
“I am thrilled to be taking on the role of Dracula, especially when the script is in the hands of the incredible talents of Steven Moffat, Mark Gatiss and the team responsible for Sherlock.”
Bang will be joined by a wide ensemble of actors to help bring the bloody world of Dracula to life. Actors Joanna Scanlan, Chanel Cresswell, Matthew Beard, Lydia West, Dolly Wells, John Heffernan, Lujza Richter and Morfydd Clark, Paul Brennen, Sofia Oxenham, John McCrea, Phil Dunster and Millicent Wong will be joining the drama in as-yet unknown roles. Mark Gatiss himself will also be in the cast, having expressed an interest in playing Dracula’s mad henchman Renfield. But nothing is set in stone yet.
Image via The Radio Times
The show will last approximately three episodes, each of undisclosed length but since this is from the creators of Sherlock, we’re guessing each episode will be movie length in runtime, an hour or more to get their money’s worth of the material. The show’s plot will be, naturally, an adaptation of the Dracula novel but offering a new spin to make it relevant to modern audiences. Moffat said the show will re-centre Dracula as the hero of his own story, as opposed to the antagonist he was in the book and most other adaptations. He will be at the center of the action, as opposed to a more shadowy figure who makes fleeting appearances to menace the heroes. Moffat and Gatiss described the process as difficult, keen to give Dracula center stage but also not take away from his evil at all. They hope their hard work pays off and say they ‘handled’ making Dracula both the main character and truly evil. But we’ll have to wait to see how that plays out onscreen.
Image via The Radio Times
The series is currently in production, having recently completed its second episode. The show is currently filming at Bray Studios, Maidenhead, which was also the location of many classic vampire films starring Christopher Lee as the titular Count, made by Hammer Film Productions. Not much else is known about the show at this time, how closely it will adapt the book or even what the plot will be but the BBC released a short synopsis as a little teaser:
‘Three feature length episodes will re-introduce the world to Dracula, the vampire who made evil sexy. In Transylvania in 1897, the blood-drinking Count is drawing his plans against Victorian London. And be warned: the dead travel fast.’
We can’t wait to see this adaptation of a classic horror novel coming to television. We’ll keep our eyes and ears peeled for further developments. Until then, watch the shadows and keep your garlic close!
Vampires are climbing out of their coffins and onto our TV screens—and we’re rushing to invite them in. For centuries, vampires have been both monster and metaphor, a representation of anything from immigration, to capitalism, to homosexuality. These creatures have been whatever we needed them to be… including sexy, sparkly, teen heartthrobs when the cultural zeitgeist demanded it. But mostly, they’ve been damn entertaining. Whether they’re scary or scary seductive, vampires continue to be the subject of our collective fascination. Here are five phenomenal onscreen adaptations of the most unique vampire novels out there.
Listen, feminism and horror don’t always coincide (we all know which sort of dalliance gets you killed first in a slasher film). But AMC’s adaptation of international bestseller Joe Hill’s Nos4a2 is changing that—and the conception of vampires as a whole. Is unforgettable villain Charles Talent Manx scary? Oh, hell yes. Sexy? Well, he certainly doesn’t sparkle… but he IS played by Zachary Quinto. Charlie Manx prefers souls to blood and children to waifish babes in billowing nightgowns. Pretty terrifying. But the children aren’t frightened when Manx spirits them away in his Rolls Royce Wraith. They’re going to Christmasland, Manx’s psychological lair packed to the brim with every child’s dreams—and every parent’s nightmare.
Enter Vic McQueen, a tough teenager from a blue-collar town in the capable hands of director Jami O’Brien, who has, according to author Joe Hill, delved deeply into the feminist themes inherent in the story. A kickass female protagonist AND a kickass female showrunner? Yes please. Not only does the show capture the essence of the 80s, but it also captures the precarious balance of hope and resentment in its protagonist and the nuanced portrayal of her adolescence.
Get ready for the premiere on June 2nd for a vampire adaptation with some real soul.
Tune in to AMC on Sunday, June 2nd 10/9c.
2. interview with a vampire
This Anne Rice adaptation absolutely killed at the box office, earning $100m+ over budget. Part of the reason audiences so often despise film adaptations is the lack of author involvement—not an issue here. Rice penned the screenplay herself, ensuring a distinct creative vision authentic to her iconic work. And there may be more where that came from. At seventy-five, Rice has reacquired the film and television rights to her works and plans to release a Game-of-Thrones-style television epic. Currently, she’s at work on a ‘Bible’ plotting out the first two seasons.
The film (and novel) is as dark as its origin: Rice penned the short story after the tragic death of her daughter, Michelle, at age 5. The nostalgia and emotion in the film is even more prevalent than any sense of terror, and that’s only one of the reasons why fans love it. Many have fallen for the rich portrayal of New Orleans, a city many consider to be the protagonist. Oh, and bonus: while Anne Rice didn’t initially intend Louis & Lestat as a same-sex couple raising a child, she says she is all for that more modern interpretation.
3. TRUE BLOOD
This charming Southern Gothic comes with a whole lot of the debauchery that HBO is known for. Charlaine Harris’ vampires might’ve hit the screen at the Twilight peak—pretty ironic, given that series is a Mormon author’s metaphor for chastity—but it’s overflowing with sex and blood. Campy, steamy, and utterly intoxicating, the show racked up 13 million average viewers per episode, making it the highest-rated HBO show that doesn’t involve the Starks of Winterfell.
Author Charlaine Harris has compared the vampires’ struggles for rights with that of the LGBT+ community, some allusions more obvious than others (“coming out of the coffin,” “God Hates Fangs”). Both the TV show and novels feature copious LGBT+ characters, and let’s just say the show is action-packed regardless of whether that action is fighting, or, you know…
4. let the right onein
Adapted from a novel by John Ajvide Lindqvist, Let the Right One in is such an effective vampire movie in large part because it doesn’t aim to be a horror. Director Tomas Alfredson had no background in horror, and so he chose instead to discard some of the darker parts of the novel (Håkan’s pedophilia, for instance) and focus on the main characters’ interpersonal relationship. Disinterested in creating an outright genre film, Alfredson commented, “I suppose the strongest elements of fear are the fantasies of the scary things that could happen… When scary things do happen, you tend not to be so afraid — it’s the fantasy that’s the scariest.”
The film is dominated by sparse sets and gray lighting, the murders that occur all the more sinister because of their strangeness. Audiences feel uneasy as a small girl takes down a grown man. And audiences feel even worse when they realize Oskar, a bullied child with violent revenge fantasies, may be more dangerous than the vampire. In Let the Right One In, childhood innocence is nothing so soft and harmless.
5. Vampire Academy
With taglines “Friendship is Forever” and “They Suck at School,” the franchise delivers on its implicit promise: that this is a campy teen story with all the debauchery you’d expect from a remote vampire boarding school. While Richelle Mead’s portrayal of adolescence may be classic, her take on vampires is anything but. The internationally-bestselling series depicts the social stratification between Moroi—rich, ambiguously European teens who drink human blood and can use elemental magic—and their mostly-human Dhampir bodyguards. Oh, and then there’s the Strigoi, who drink blood and, more importantly, kill their victims.
The series (and the movie!) is just as much ski slope shenanigans as it is international-murder-mystery, a romp across genres with a delightfully mouthy protagonist. Although the film was not especially high-grossing, the source material has sold over 8 million copies and topped the NYT Bestseller List on numerous occasions.
Vampires are a classic staple of literature. They can represent endless possibilities, from tragic figures of gothic romance to rampaging beasts of the night. These varied roles have contributed to vampires as enduring fixtures of literature. In addition to a thousand vampire books out there, it can be hard to judge those that have true ‘bite’ from the shambling ghouls. But below are five excellent vampires novel of which any bloodsucking fans will be enraptured by. Just be careful… don’t read them after dark!
Image Via Goodreads
5. ‘Anno Dracula’ by Kim Newman
Anno Draculais functions as both a sequel to Draculaand a new twist on the mythology of the classical Dracula lore. Dracula claims victory at the end of the original book instead of dying and marries Queen Victoria, establishing an order of vampires that rule London from the shadows. But Jack the Ripper stalks the streets, threatening Dracula’s regime as his murders grow out of hand, forcing a human detective named Charles Beauregard is dispatched to hunt down the killer. But instead, he finds himself drawn into a web of intrigue with a plot to overthrow Dracula’s rule. The story is full of politics, murder, and cameos from dozens of literary characters, Anno Dracula is an intriguing, deliciously dark read.
Image via goodreads
4. ‘Vampire Academy’ by Richelle Mead
Imagine if you will a hybrid between Buffy the Vampire Slayerand Harry Potter. If you liked the sound of that, you’ll love Vampire Academy. The book tells the story of Rose Hathaway, a Dhampir who is the bodyguard to a vampire princess. Both of them end up at the titular academy, where they must blend into both the social scene, ritualistic classes, and fight off the dangerous vampires hunting them both down. Rose, an exciting and stylish protagonist, is a fun character to get to know for young readers.
Image Via Goodreads
3. ‘The Strain’ by Chuck Hogan and Guillermo Del Toro
The Strainreimagines vampires much like zombies, the apex for a horrendous vampiric plague that will cover the world. On a darkened runway, a mysterious plane lands, refusing to respond to communicating channels, the shades on its windows drawn. What is found inside unleashes the vampire plague upon New York City and begins an apocalypse. The Strain is a ‘realistic’ take on the vampire genre that feels horrifically terrifying while not sacrificing its monster for realism sake. The intro alone will grab you in a heartbeat. Check this one out; its a heart stopper.
Image Via Goodreads
2. ‘Fevre Dream’ by George R.R. Martin
Fevre Dreamis a 1982 novel by George R.R. Martin, who needs no introduction. Set in Mississippi during 1888, the story follows riverboat captain Abner Marsh, as one Joshua York approaches him an offer that drags him to the very heart of darkness. The novel works as both an adventure and horror story, filled with memorable characters, dazzling atmosphere, and exciting action. The vampire society is examined in high detail in this novel, making great characters alongside the human protagonist. The cherry on top is the high detail in the setting, with George R.R. Martin’s keen eye providing a lush world that feels very lived. Check it out!
Image Via Goodreads
1. ‘Salem’s Lot’ by Stephen King
Salem’s Lotis scary. No less should be expected by the master horror writer, Stephen King, but this novel stands as one of his truly most terrifying—all the more impressive by this book only being his second published. The story focuses on writer Ben Mears, who comes to the sleepy New England town of Jerusalem’s Lot. But disappearances begin to happen, along with strange events, Mears suspects something sinister is arriving in the town. The plot functions as more of a mystery, with the vampires not revealing their presence until over halfway through of the book, but the chilling atmosphere and memorable characters eagerly hold reader’s attention. And when the vampires begin to siege in force, the book grabs the reader by the shoulder and doesn’t let go until the last line in the final chapter. Scary, well written, and paced perfectly, and Jerusalem’s Lot is the cream of the crop in the vampire genre.