Universal Pictures will release “Renfield,” a monster movie centered around Dracula’s sidekick on April 14, 2023, the studio announced on Friday.
The film stars Nicholas Hoult (“Mad Max: Fury Road,” “X-Men” franchise) as Renfield, the tortured aide to history’s most narcissistic boss, Dracula, who will be played by Oscar-winner Nicolas Cage.
The official synopsis is as follows: Renfield is forced to procure his master’s prey and do his every bidding, no matter how debased. But now, after centuries of servitude, Renfield is ready to see if there’s a life outside the shadow of The Prince of Darkness. If only he can figure out how to end his codependency.
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, based on an original story outline from “The Walking Dead” and “Invincible” creator Robert Kirkman.
“Renfield” also stars Awkwafina (“The Farewell,” Marvel’s “Shang-Chi and the Legend of Ten Rings”), Ben Schwartz (“Sonic,” “The Afterparty”) and Adrian Martinez (“The Secret Life of Walter Mitty,” “Focus”).
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.