The prolific novels of author Anne Rice are a definitive staple for fans of horror and fantasy literature, the most recognized of her works being The Vampire Chronicles series that introduced the world to an array of enigmatic immortal characters and the fan favorite “Brat Prince” - the vampire Lestat. Rice's vampire novels span centuries, from ancient Egypt to the present day, and follow a complex structure of connecting characters that tell their unique stories throughout significant era's in history. From both visual and narrative perspectives, the novels are rich with adaptable qualities for both the big and small screen.
Rice's fans have been calling for more screen depictions of her books for a long time, and with the current popularity of fantasy novel adaptations in film and TV, it is not surprising their wish has been granted with the upcoming remake of Interview With the Vampire. With this project on the cards, the most awaited news by the vast existing fan base will pertain to the casting of Lestat, and the film's director may have just revealed this pivotal choice.
The Vampire Chronicles are a mesmerizing world, rich with historic events and seeping with culture. Previous attempts to adapt these novels have been met with varying degrees of success in the eyes of Rice's fans. Interview With the Vampire was first (fairly faithfully) adapted for film in 1994 to critical acclaim, starring Tom Cruise as Lestat with Brad Pitt and Kirsten Dunst in the other key roles as Louis and Claudia. This offering was succeeded by Queen Of The Damned in 2004 - a somewhat looser and less favorably remembered depiction of Rice's third Chronicles novel, with Stuart Townsend cast as Lestat. Universal Pictures and Imagine Entertainment acquired the rights to The Vampire Chronicles in 2014 and it has since been revealed that screenwriter and director Josh Boone (The Fault In Our Stars) is attached to write and direct a remake of the series' first book.
Lestat is arguably the most captivating and charismatic of Rice's vampires and the casting of this character would be intrinsic to the success of any Chronicles adaptation in which he features. Probably provoking both delight and trepidation among the character's fans, Boone has just revealed an image of Jared Leto via Twitter (h/t ComicBook.com) stating his support for the Oscar winning actor to take on this challenge (see below).
— Josh Boone (@JoshBooneMovies) May 4, 2016
Although this slightly cryptic message reveals the director's enthusiasm for this possible casting, we are left to speculate about whether this is a real possibility or just an ideal scenario for Boone's vision of his project. Leto has proved himself a multi-talented and adaptable actor with qualities that could translate fittingly to the character. With hinted plans to include material from The Vampire Lestat (the second Chronicles novel) in the film and if further films succeed it, the actor's alternate rock star career would certainly be apropos.
Due to the enormous popularity of this character, and a fan base as fiercely loyal as it is vast, any casting choice is likely to have a polarizing effect among both book lovers and fans of the previous movies. It is possible that an experienced, award-winning actor such as Leto could be the best choice to appeal to a wide audience. Stay tuned for (hopefully) more definitive news on this casting soon.
We will keep you posted with news about Interview With the Vampire as it develops.