Dracula's Favorite Weirdo Will Get His Own Universal Monster Movie, Renfield

Tom Waits (left) played Renfield in Francis Ford Coppola’s 1992 Bram Stoker’s Dracula.
Image: Columbia Pictures

Bram Stoker’s Dracula has been adapted so often that we’re all very familiar with the bloodsucker’s tale. Even Van Helsing, the famed Dracula hunter, has gotten time in the spotlight. Now we’re getting a movie about Renfield, the psychiatric patient who gobbles spiders and flies while pining for his vampire master.

Renfield will be part of the new Universal Monsters renaissance—along with Leigh Whannell’s soon-to-be-released Invisible Man and Paul Feig’s in-development Dark Army—that’s happening in the wake of the Dark Universe flameout. It’ll be directed by Dexter Fletcher, who made Rocketman and also famously stepped in after Bryan Singer’s departure to complete Bohemian Rhapsody.

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The Hollywood Reporter notes that “this take on the project is described as a comedic, lighthearted approach in the vein of Taika Waititi’s vampire mockumentary What We Do in the Shadows, in which Renfield realizes he is in a bad, co-dependent relationship,” an idea that was pitched by The Walking Dead creator Robert Kirkman and scripted by Ryan Ridley (Rick and Morty).

That does certainly sound reminiscent of FX’s What We Do in the Shadows TV show, though at the end of season one, it was revealed that loyal vampire familiar/token human Guillermo—who is 100 percent in a bad, co-dependent relationship with his master—is [spoiler!] actually descended from Van Helsing, something the show will no doubt be exploring in its second season. However, What We Do in the Shadows is genius comedy, and the fact that it’s inspiring other projects (that sound about as far away from The Mummy as possible) can only be a good thing.

We’ll bring you more on Renfield—casting’s gonna be hugely important for this one—when we hear it.

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