Universal May Remake ‘Dracula’ Next

Published on March 11, 2020

Following the success of The Invisible Man, Universal may want to keep sending their classic monsters over to Blumhouse Pictures. They just turned one iconic character into a clever, suspenseful, and very modern story that honored the spirit of the original classic. From top to bottom, The Invisible Man is a creative and financial success. Now, Blumhouse is looking at another Universal monster to reinterpret for today’s audiences: Dracula.

A New Dracula

The director behind The Invitation and Destroyer, Karyn Kusama, will direct the new version of Dracula for Blumhouse Pictures. The Wrap learned Kusama is directing the horror movie. Kusama’s usual collaborators, screenwriters Matt Manfredi and Phil Hay, are writing it. Together, the three of them make exceptional films.

The Dracula remake isn’t exactly set up and 100% ready to go at Universal yet. However, following The Invisible Man, it’s hard to imagine this project not coming together. It has got creative success and money written all over it.

The Perfect Filmmaker for Dracula

For a long list of reasons, Kusama is a perfect director for a Dracula movie. To start with, she directed one of the best horror movies of the 21st century so far, The Invitation. The movie was set mostly in one location, and it was so cinematic, big yet intimate, and full of drama and life. She can capture such pure horror, drama, and suspense. She did the same again in her last movie, Destroyer. Kusama’s movies tend to have incredible lead performances, too, which is obviously needed for a Dracula movie. 

Plus, Kusama knows how to stretch a budget. Blumhouse makes their movies on the cheap, and sometimes, it shows. When Blumhouse teams up with a director who knows how to make a movie bigger than it is, that shows, too. Kusama can do just that. She doesn’t need a lot of money to produce fully-realized visions such as The Invitation

The Success of The Invisible Man

The Invisible Man only cost $10 million to produce. So far, the movie has already made over $100 million worldwide. The Universal monster is a step in the right direction for other classic Universal monsters to follow. The Invisible Man is proof audiences want specific, personal, and creative horror, not mass-made garbage like The Mummy

Universal handing over their monsters to Blumhouse was the best decision they could’ve made, especially after they’ve fumbled the ball so many times with these characters. If the The Invisible Man is only a taste of what’s to come from Blumhouse’s take on monsters, then count us in for all of what’s to come. 

What’s Next for Other Universal Monsters

From the sound of it, Universal doesn’t plan on only making smaller budget horror movies with their creatures. They’re already working with Elizabeth Banks on a new version of The Invisible Woman, although that doesn’t sound like a complete horror movie. The same goes for a monster mashup that Spy director Paul Feige is working on.

Universal still has plenty of options for what to do with their classic stable of characters, but clearly, the Blumhouse approach is the right way to go. Imagine what they could do with a modern day version of The Bride of Frankenstein, a remake Universal killed after it got too wildly expensive for their taste.

As long as these remakes keep getting talented filmmakers such as Karyn Kusama and Leigh Whannell onboard, then they’re in good hands. These are great stories that need great storytellers. Anything less will do the classic monsters a disservice. In the meantime, let’s get excited about all the fun and horror Kusama will likely one day bring to Bram Stoker’s Dracula. 

Jack Giroux is a Staff Writer at Grit Daily. Based in Los Angeles, he is an entertainment journalist who's previously written for Thrillist, Slash Film, Film School Rejects, and The Film Stage.

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