The concept of vampirism has captivated pop culture since before cinema or TV was invented. Poems like The Bride of Corinth by Goethe entertained 18th-century geeks before John William Polidori’s 1819 work of prose called The Vampyre began a particular romantic genre destined to take over every aspect of the entertainment industry.
Fortunately, modern interest in this type of undead has broadened to discuss different interesting topics, such as true facts about the infamous vampire bat or the difference between zombies and Dracula. TV, alongside movies and video games, has kept the public’s fascination with vampires burning strong by producing shows on a regular basis, the current trends being adaptations and reboots.
Based on the first book of a completed sci-fi trilogy by Justin Cronin, The Passage debuted in January 2019 and has so far garnered a decent IMDB rating of 7.4, but was surprisingly canceled before it could dig deeper into Cronin’s rich plot.
The story follows an orphan girl and her protector as she proves to be humanity’s salvation in a world where twelve death row inmates turned vampires have spread their affliction far and wide thanks to a secret government experiment gone wrong. While no longer a unique plot, the TV series made a good, if short-lived, directorial impression.
The Vampire Chronicles
A study of vampire entertainment is never complete without mentioning Anne Rice, the author of 11 books following the adventures of the charismatic and melancholic vampire Lestat de Lioncourt. Interview with the Vampire (1994) became an instant movie classic and, despite being succeeded by The Queen of the Damned (1988) to weaker critical acclaim, solidified Rice as a trademark name in vampire mythology.
Hulu’s plans for a full TV adaptation are going ahead with Dee Johnson (Nashville, Mars, E.R., The Good Wife) at the helm. No release date has been confirmed, but filming began in September, promising exciting news to come.
The Lost Boys
CW is rebooting the 1987 movie starring Kiefer Sutherland as a big bad vampire. After a disappointing start to the production, resulting in an overhaul of 40% of the script and the dismissal of several cast members, including Teen Wolf’s Tyler Posey, Den of Geek confirms a new pilot is now being developed.
Produced by Rob Thomas (Veronica Mars, iZombie) and directed by Catherine Hardwicke (Twilight), the new Lost Boys will be loyal to the original storyline of two siblings losing themselves in the vampire underworld of Santa Carla, except this version is rumored to be replacing the Frog Brothers with Sisters. Who will play the starring roles? One of many exciting updates to look forward to as the revamped project takes shape.
Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter
In addition to How To Survive a Horror Movie, as well as Pride and Prejudice and Zombies, both highly rated purchases on Amazon's Audible, Seth Grahame-Smith wrote two biographical horror novels: Abraham Lincoln, Vampire Hunter (2010) and its sequel The Last American Vampire (2015). The first book inspired a 2012 movie of the same name. Despite mixed reviews, it made enough Box Office sales to show that vampires had not lost their charm, especially when combined with famous figures.
NBC has now announced that an Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter TV series is in the early stages of production, with its future uncertain yet promising, if done right. Whether a sequel to the movie or a new adaptation of the books, the script is a collaboration between the author, who co-produced the IT remake, and Terry Matalas (12 Monkeys).
The plot appears to follow a trending TV recipe involving a 500-year-old vampire partnering up with an FBI agent, Abby, as she investigates supernatural murders.
Vampiric Themes and Hooks
Representations of these creatures swing between monstrous and beautiful, powerful and vulnerable. Books have definitely helped build their complex reputation, inspiring many more categories of 21st-century entertainment. Video games include RPGs and Action titles, such as Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines and Vampyr. In terms of alternative entertainment, Online casino slots like Immortal Romance and Blood Suckers are good examples.
Both follow the same 5-reel design, but, just like cinema, differ in their thematic approach, one using a seductive gothic style, the other sending players to hunt evil undead through graveyards and tombs. That same clash between terror and awe can be found in silver screen entertainment.
The first few installments of the Underworld saga, still a fan favorite among Sony Pictures collections, delivered a smooth combination of blockbuster action and star-crossed love. Dracula Untold (2014) had those elements too, while boosting the intrigue of its plot with historical references to Vlad the Impaler. And then we have the likes of Byzantium (2012), a low-key production adding vampirism to a story of human emotion, connection and survival.
Vampires can embody many things – psychological, societal, philosophical and more. The different kinds of excitement they inspire in people and the entertainment industry itself is why they continue to find themselves the center of attention. Any of these upcoming TV series are sure to make that legacy proud.