Love him or hate him, Eli Roth has made an indelible impression on the horror world within the past decade, and although he’s served as producer on awesomely creepy indies like The Last Exorcism, and has also become ubiquitous in Tarantino fare like Grindhouse and Inglorious Basterds, his fans have been restless because he hasn’t stepped into the director’s chair for a feature length film since 2007’s Hostel 2. Well, fans can rejoice (and critics can just hang their heads and cry), because Roth is set to direct the Dracula-inspired Harker in 2013!
Harker is a modern retelling of the classic Dracula story by Bram Stoker, focusing on the character of Jonathan Harker who is re-imagined here as a Scotland Yard detective hot on the trail of the elusive Count Dracula. As of now, a star has not been attached to the juicy role of Harker, but word has it that Dracula will be played by none other than—wait for it—Russell Crowe! Does the pairing of Crowe and Roth sound weird to you? Well, they just recently completed the RZA directed martial arts epic Man With the Iron Fists (Roth co-scripted with RZA), and so that’s probably how that partnership was struck up.
The pairing of Crowe and Eli Roth is an interesting one, to say the least. It signifies a step up for Roth in the film world, working with an A-list actor like Crowe, and it begs the question just how much of his signature, over the top style will Roth showcase here? Our guess is we’re still in for a bloody good time, because Roth isn’t known for his restraint.
Also between this and Man With the Iron Fists, Crowe really seems to be branching out, which is awesome, because although we love the blockbusters like Gladiator and Robin Hood, it’s great to see him in unconventional movies that compliment his rough around the edges style. When all is said and done, we bet he’ll join Gary Oldman and Frank Langella as one of the best to step into the role of Dracula.
Crowe is only attached for this film though, which opens up a lot of exciting possibilities for this budding franchise. If Harker ends with the slaying of Dracula, then where do you take it from there? With a director like Eli Roth at the helm, we’re sure there won’t be any shortage of surprises.