Nicholas Hoult has landed the lead role in Universal’s “Renfield,” a monster movie centered around Dracula’s sidekick and based on an original story outline from Robert Kirkman, the studio announced on Tuesday.
Chris McKay (“The Tomorrow War,” “The Lego Batman Movie”) is directing and producing.
Ryan Ridley (Fox’s “Ghosted,” Cartoon Network’s “Rick & Morty”) wrote the script. Plot details are being kept deep inside Dracula’s crypt (which is to say, they’re under wraps).
In Bram Stoker’s 1897 novel “Dracula,” Renfield was a patient in an insane asylum who ate vermin to absorb their life force — and whom Count Dracula used to enter the asylum and attack Jonathan Harker’s school mistress fiancée Mina.
The film will be produced by Skybound Entertainment’s film team, including Kirkman, David Alpert, Bryan Furst and Sean Furst. McKay’s producing partner Samantha Nisenboim will be joining the project as executive producer.
Universal remains committed to creating compelling, filmmaker-driven projects based on characters from the studio’s vast monsters legacy. Instead of prescribing a mandated updating of these monster stories and making them all part of a larger scheme, the studio loosened these restrictions and open-sourced to filmmakers who were inspired to create their own unique stories; similar to what was done with the “Invisible Man” film inspired by Universal’s classic Monster character.
Hoult was most recently seen in Taylor Sheridan’s “Those Who Wish Me Dead,” alongside Angelina Jolie. Hoult is represented by UTA, 42, Relevant PR and Felker Toczek Suddleson Abramson LLP.
Deadline first reported the news.