Dracula reloaded

Alex Proyas stakes his claim to Year Zero

Director Alex Proyas always seems to like to take a little time between films – it’s been three years since I, Robot. But he’s finally locked in a new project.

Universal has hired the director to make Dracula Year Zero, which will explore the earlier years of Vlad the Impaler, back when he was really just known as Vlad to his mates. Writers Matt Sazama and Burk Sharpless sold their new version of the classic story to the studio, boasting a story that shows Vlad’s life and why he’s still considered a hero in Romania for facing down the Turks.

"Usually when you see him, he's past his prime and 100 years old," Sazama blabbed to Variety. "In our movie, he's at the height of his powers.” And his writing partner is obviously excited to be working at monster movie central: "One of the cool things about this is that we're doing it at Universal," Sharpless adds. "This is the home of monster movies."

According to Proyas, the tale aims to grab more than the usual sympathy for the character, a man who "sells his soul to the Devil to save his kingdom and family." There’s no casting or start date yet, but it’ll need to strike quickly - monster fever is back in Hollywood with several other Dracula related ideas, Castlevania, The Wolf Man and another Mummy entry arriving in the next couple of years – and it doesn’t want to get stuck in the development crypt.

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