Huh? Russell Crowe & Eli Roth doing Dracula with ‘Harker?’

Posted on July 11, 2012 by UK Editor

by Ben Bussey

Okay… as ‘wtf’ news stories go, this I guess this isn’t quite so far out of left field as Clive Barker writing and directing Zombies vs. Gladiators, but it’s still fair to say this is not one we would have predicted. Deadline reports that Eli Roth is in talks to direct Harker, a (sigh) reimagining of Dracula, with – erm – Russell Crowe as the Count.

Yeah… not the most obvious casting. Unless, that is, they’re going for the Lon Chaney Jr in Son of Dracula type.

Presumably the two got on well as Roth co-wrote and produced the upcoming The Man With The Iron Fists, in which Crowe co-stars. Does that make Crowe the best choice for the Count, though…? Well honestly, that may be the least of our worries, given that this Warner Bros production from screenwriters Lee Shipman and Brian McGreevy reinvents Jonathan Harker as the lead, and a detective. Maybe that’s not the worst idea ever – really, it’s not too far removed from how Hammer used Harker in their original Dracula – but even so, aren’t we all a bit tired with all this revisionist crap? Hasn’t the underperformance of Abraham Lincoln Vampire Hunter (which I haven’t seen and have no desire to, particularly after Dustin’s review) demonstrated that we’re getting tired of this approach? And what with Neil Marshall’s Last Voyage of the Demeter in the works, and – gulp – Dario Argento’s Dracula 3D on the horizon, do we really need another bloody Dracula film?

Oh well – if they’re hiring Roth, hopefully this means the film will at least have some balls. In any case this makes Roth a fairly busy guy, given he’s working on his Netflix series Hemlock Grove and his cannibal movie The Green Inferno which should mark his first directorial outing since Hostel Part 2. Should be interesting to see how he does working from someone else’s script; presumably means the film should at least have a decent ending this time…?