Few characters have stood the test of time quite as well as Dracula. Whether it's in film, TV, comic books or good old-fashioned novels, the world's most famous vampire has been sinking his teeth into all kinds of media for more than 100 years.
Dracula Untold, which opened this weekend, has sought to reinvent the character by telling his origins as a hero who turns to dark powers to save his kingdom. So far, it seems that audiences are reacting well to this twist, with Dracula Untold coming in at a strong number two behind David Fincher's extremely popular Gone Girl.
Whether the box office holds steady enough for Universal and Legendary to recoup the film's not insignificant budget remains to be seen, but that hasn't stopped many from wondering about the possibility of a sequel. At this weekend's New York Comic Con, we sat down with director Gary Shore to discuss what direction a sequel might go.
Shore was the first to admit that a sequel was entirely dependent on audiences getting out to theaters, but he did offer a glimpse into where he'd like to take the story if given the chance.
Personally, if I was to approach it again, I’d love to be able to explore something in between 1460s and modern day. There’s loads of history within Europe that you could just do something that we haven’t seen with a Dracula film.
[Dracula Untold] doesn’t limit the scope or the possibilities of where you could go with the Dracula story, because it’s just over 450 years between what happens in Dracula Untold and what happened in Bram Stoker’s novel, and another 114 year or so after for a modern day take.
I mean the idea of doing the Dracula Untold thing is because it is divorced from Bram Stoker’s novel. It’s the beginning seeds to be able to get the character there. If an audience really digs this and they go out and they enjoy the film, the next step obviously would be to take that character and start really delving into the true darkness of who Dracula is. Because when we find him in Bram Stoker’s novel, this is a tortured guy who’s been kept alive for hundreds of years. It’s perfectly set up to be able to try to explore.
Shore also discussed the possibility of a plot that would bounce back and forth between different time periods.
You might be able to stay in the present or move…I’d love to see a version where you could flip between the past and explore different parts in history.
Ultimately, however, Shore was simply relieved to be done with this project.
But at the moment, I actually just feel like I would happily settle for two people in a room talking. Shoot it on an iPhone and I would be very, very happy. It’s been a grueling 3 ½ years.
Needless to say, there's plenty of directions that Universal and Legendary could take this franchise, especially if it's part of a broader Avengers-style movie monster universe (more on that later). For now, it sounds like fans of Shore's vision may not have to choose between one historical period or another in which to set Luke Evans' vampire, as a combination of many seems like one idea the director is favoring.
Of course, bringing the character into a modern setting risks comparisons between other vampire-focused 'alternate futures' that haven't fared so strongly in recent years. Which means the property might be better off carving out a niche for itself in a removed past time and place.
Did you check out Dracula Untold this weekend? What did you think and where would you like to see a sequel take the character?
Dracula Untold is in theaters now.