Chances are that those familiar with director Francis Ford Coppola’s artistically extravagant adaptation of Bram Stoker’s Dracula recall Keanu Reeves’ accent-less turn as the prim and proper English estate agent, Jonathan Harker.
It turns out the Matrix star really should’ve just held off some 19 years on playing the fellow so he could instead do what he does best (play an action star) in Warner Bros.’ re-imagining of Stoker’s iconic horror tale, titled Harker.
Deadline says that Warner Bros. has aquired the spec script for Harker, which redesigns the titular character as an efficient Scotland yard sleuth hot on the trail of legendary blood-sucker, Dracula. Jaume Collet-Serra (Unknown) is already attached to direct the project, which reportedly lays the foundation for a new franchise revolving around Mr. Harker. Because if there’s one thing Hollywood is missing right now, it’s a series that reboots a 19th-century literary classic for contemporary audiences (cough!).
Harker was co-written by Brian McGreevy, who recently sold off his first novel, “Hemlock Grove,” a revisionist Gothic horror piece that revolves around a vampire, werewolf, and a Frankenstein monster-like teen girl who live in a regular Pennsylvania high school. The book is apparently quite literally the anti-Twilight and meant to serve as a rebuttal against the recent wave of teen supernatural romance stories that have flooded the market. On that note alone, it’s possible that Harker will turn out better (in terms of quality) than when director Stephen Sommers re-envisioned a Dracula character as a monster-killing action hero in the 2004 film, Van Helsing.
Collet-Serra has a history of working in the area of horror, having helmed the House of Wax remake and Orphan. The director’s Liam-Neeson-in-Europe mystery/thriller Unknown arrives in cinemas later this month, and could be an indicator of what Collet-Serra will bring to the table with Harker, in terms of crafting a captivating tale of foul deeds involving (literal) monstrous figures.
Leonardo DiCaprio’s Appian Way is onboard to produce Harker, though DiCaprio himself is not expected to star in the film. If this is intended to be the first chapter in a new franchise, look for Warner Bros. to sign either someone of DiCaprio’s stature or an up-and-comer to headline Harker. Who knows, maybe Keanu could end up playing the title character again. 😛
Source: Badass Digest