For my book Your Vampire Story (And How to Write It) I drew up a list of major vampire films for the past three decades or so. In all that time I found few years that did not have some film that didn’t either come from a major studio, or feature a A List movie star. Given my confidence this will continue, here are some thesbians who have not (yet) played members of the undead but quite frankly should:
Benedict Cumberpatch, star of the BBC’s Sherlock as well as the upcoming Star Trek: Into Darkness. Easily one of the most striking actors to make his presence known in the last few years. His intensity and ability to surprise promises to take him far and I for one think he’d make a fascinating vampire. Obviously he’d be an interesting Dracula, but other roles come to mind–Barnabas Collins, the Count of Saint Germain, even Sir Francis Varney. Or an original character! Either way, he’d certainly do a fantastic job if given the chance. And if you’re looking to get a further idea of his range, tak a look at his brief turn as an Elf in The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.
Kelly Reilly might be best known for her role as Mary Watson (nee Morstan) opposite Jude Law in Sherlock Holmes and its sequel Game of Shadows. But given her recent performance in Flight with Denzel Washington perhaps that will change. I first saw her in the Poirot episode “Sad Cypress” in which she played the murder victim. Her character was supposed to inspire strong emotions in others while remaining a compelling mystery in and of herself. Not an easy thing to carry off, and yet she did. Her acting skills have continued to impress, and I’ve zero doubt that given a chance to play a vampire she would create one of great nuance and interest. Perhaps as the lead in a film version of Anne Rices’ The Master of Rampling Gate?
Anne Hathaway is probably busy these days putting up a shelf at home for all those awards she’s slated to win for Les Miserables. But let us not forget she also played Catwoman! In a career that so far has spanned drama to musical to comedy and superheroes, why not hope to see this talented lady don a pair of fangs? For example, she’d make a marvelous Carmilla! Or Lucy Westenra (in the book she’s supposed to be the one with dark hair, not Mina). Of course she’s such a “name” star now, this would mean an excellent script or a top-list production to lure her into a film. Or both. So much the better. And baring some horrible event, she should have decades yet to play such a part. We can hope!
At this point my imagination stalls a little bit–but mostly because many of the actors that come to mind already have played vampires at this point! Elijah Wood in Paris Je T’aime, Elle Fanning in Twixt, Bill Nighy in Underworld, Jonathan Rhys Meyers in the new Dracula t.v. series, Portia de Rossi in Mockingbird Lane, Jaime Campbell Bower in Twilight, etc.
So now I turn to you. Who would you like to see play a vampire who hasn’t already done so? For that matter, what kind of vampires would you like to see them play?