With Unknown director Jaume Collet-Serra re-envisioning the Dracula mythology in Harker, and Alex Proyas exploring the titular vampire’s history in Dracula: Year Zero, it seems odd to say that Dario Argento’s Dracula 3D is seemingly the only straightforward adaptation of Bram Stoker’s iconic Gothic horror novel currently in the works.

That’s happens to be the case right now, and the cult director’s 3D take on the iconic blood-drinking ghoul has appropriately landed another talent with a cult following: Rutger Hauer.

Twitch Film has confirmed that the Hobo with a Shotgun star has signed on to portray elder vampire hunter Van Hesling in Argento’s 3D horror tale, which the filmmaker claims will remain faithful in design to Stoker’s original text.

If nothing else, like next year’s much higher-profile release, Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter, Dracula 3D is guaranteed to be a brutally bloody affair that should also please genre fans looking for something darker in the age of Twilight and The Vampire Diaries.

Given that Argento is known for crafting supernatural horror stories that are often overly erotic and stylistically theatrical, it’s hard not to wonder if Dracula 3D won’t essentially be a lower-budgeted version of Francis Ford Coppola’s 1992 adaptation of the novel  (side note: does that mean Hauer could be considered the poor man’s Anthony Hopkins, who portrayed Van Helsing in Coppola’s film?).

Hopkins as Van Helsing.

While Argento’s detractors generally regard his films as essentially being glorified Grindhouse fare, he’s also earned more than his share of accolades for creating horror works that boast some beautiful if macabre imagery and cinematography. The most famous of his creations (Inferno, Suspira) were released in the late ’70s, but Argento has retained a limited but loyal underground following since then.

Dracula 3D won’t be a major release in the U.S., but it should do well enough amongst Argento fans and hardcore horror aficionados alike. Production is slated to begin this May, so look for it to hit theaters (or possibly be sent straight to DVD) sometime in 2012.

Source: Twitch Film